Indiana sees big drop in synthetic drug overdoses
Monday, July 22, 2013 11:00 AM
In July 2011, Ryan Moreland, a 23-year-old Hanover man, died from an overdose of synthetic drugs - commonly known as bath salts.
Moreland's death was one of several in the state that helped bring attention to the synthetic drug problem.
Indiana's legislators knew that action had to be taken to curb the manufacture, sale and use of these deadly drugs.
State Sen. Jim Merritt of Indianapolis sponsored the laws that ban the distribution and possession of synthetic drugs containing certain chemical compounds.
Now, two years after Ryan Moreland's death progress is being reported.
The Indiana Poison Center has seen big drops in the number of reported overdoses from synthetic drug abuse since the state laws took effect.
The latest poison center report shows an 86 percent decrease in reported overdoses of "bath salt" drugs since 2011. That's when Indiana's first synthetic drug ban was passed.
The center has had a 61 percent decrease in "spice" overdoses over the same period.
The Moreland family has been vocal about the dangers of synthetic drugs. Their message is getting through, and that should be a source of comfort as they remember Ryan who died two years ago this month.