The small coastal town of Delray Beach is located on the southeastern coast of Florida, within Palm Beach County. South Florida has long been a hotspot for drug traffic, widespread prescription medication diversion, new synthetic and designer drugs, and illicit drug use.
Delray Beach has been considered the center of a major opioid public health crisis in the United States. In 2016, there were nearly 3,000 opioid overdose deaths in Florida, per the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). Overdose rates in Delray Beach have notoriously been high, but numbers are declining due to local efforts by the Delray Beach Police Department and closer regulation of the sober home industry within the community. In 2016, the Delray Beach Police Department responded to 690 drug overdoses, the majority of which involved an opioid drug (90 percent). In 2017, that number dropped to 625.
State and local community efforts in Delray Beach are working to reduce overdoses by addressing drug abuse and addiction in the area.