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Map of Durham County, North Carolina

Durham County,
North Carolina

Population: 326,126

Jail Capacity: 735-bed facility

Durham County, North Carolina is an urban community located north of the capital, Raleigh. It is comprised of 54.7% White, 35.3% Black/African American, 13.9% Hispanic/Latino, and 6% Asian individuals.

The Durham County Board of Public Health reports that fatal opioid overdoses in the county have doubled in the last ten years. Further, emergency services' calls for opioid overdoses have nearly doubled from 2020-2022. Durham County currently offers medication assisted treatment (MAT) to individuals with opioid use disorder (OUD) in addition to several types of therapeutic services. Despite this, Durham County does not have robust data on the number of individuals that continue their treatment post-release and note that many face barriers when attempting to continue their treatment.

Durham County participated in the first Building Bridges program and received implementation funding. They now seek to expand treatment options for incarcerated individuals as well as improve their continuity of care post-release. A recent study in North Carolina found that, in the first two weeks after being released from incarceration, inmates were 40 times more likely to die of an opioid overdose than someone in the general population. According to the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, there were 432 overdose emergency department visits in 2023 compared to the 384 from January to August 2022. This statistic alone demonstrates that Durham County continues to need support in recovery efforts for individuals with OUD.