Maryland Department of Health and Maryland Poison Center Reports Fourth Synthetic Cannabinoids Hospitalization in Maryland

Cases are on the Rise—Effects can be Harmful and Deadly

Baltimore, MD (April 17, 2018) – The Maryland Department of Health and the Maryland Poison Center have reported the fourth hospitalization in Maryland from individuals experiencing risk of severe bleeding after using synthetic cannabinoids, which are often called Spice, K2, Bliss, Scooby Snax, or fake weed. 

Clinical signs include bruising, nosebleeds, bleeding of the gums, bleeding out of proportion to the level of injury, coughing up blood, vomiting blood, blood in urine or stool, or excessively heavy menstrual bleeding and back pain. 

Synthetic cannabinoids are human-made, mind-altering chemicals that are sprayed onto dried plant material.  They can be smoked or sold as liquids to be vaporized in e-cigarettes and other devices.  These chemicals are called cannabinoids because they are similar to chemicals found in the marijuana plant.  The health effects from using synthetic cannabinoids can be unpredictable, harmful, and deadly. Additionally, it is likely that these products have been contaminated with a product that makes people bleed and there is no way to identify which products are contaminated. 

Synthetic cannabinoids are found in places like drug paraphernalia shops, novelty stores, and online. The potential for harm applies to synthetic cannabinoids purchased legally or illegally. 

The four cases reported in Maryland have noted similarities to those in Illinois, where 131 cases—including three deaths—have been reported since March 7, 2018. 

“If you are using synthetic cannabinoids—stop,” said Dr. Howard Haft, deputy secretary of Public Health Services at the Maryland Department of Health. “Make no mistake, using synthetic cannabinoids is extremely dangerous and can cause death.”

Anyone who has used synthetic cannabinoids in the past three months—and develops any of the symptoms outlined above—such as severe bleeding, should call 911 or have someone take them to the Emergency department immediately.  We also ask that you contact the Maryland Poison Center at 800-222-1222.

Numbers of cases reported will be updated each weekday on both the Maryland Department of Health and the Maryland Poison Center websites.



Substance Abuse Help


Zika Information


Rabies Information



The Pocomoke City Police Department has installed a Medicine Drop Box to offer residents a safe way to dispose of unused or expired medications.

The Pocomoke City Police Department is pleased to announce that a permanent Medicine Drop box has been installed in the lobby of the police department located at 1500 Market Street Pocomoke City, MD. The drop box is intended to help residents dispose of unwanted medicines and pharmaceuticals in a safe and secure way.

Read more ...

Join Ocean City Mayor Rick Meehan and Worcester County Health Department's Kathy Wool for a virtual tour of the famous Ocean City, Maryland Boardwalk. The Boardwalk is an iconic example of how walkable Worcester can be. 


New education and training campaign focused on substance use disorders

(Snow Hill, MD)- The Worcester County Health Department (WCHD) is proud to announce the launch of a new Addiction in the Workplace awareness campaign. Through Addiction in the Workplace, WCHD will provide educational material such as rack cards and posters, access to a Substance Use Resource Liaison, as well as training opportunities for Naloxone/Narcan, responsible beverage service training, and Mental Health First Aid. Educational material is free-of-cost and readily available, and most trainings are free.

Read more ...

Walk and Talk events aim to get residents moving: Worcester County Health Department to host community conversation walks.

(Snow Hill, MD)- Are you interested in walking and exploring local, walkable places? The Worcester County Health Department (WCHD) is hosting a series of community Walk and Talk events starting this July. All events are free and open to the public.

Read more ...


Extreme Heat often results in the highest number of annual deaths among all weather-related hazards. In most of the United States, extreme heat is defined as a long period (2 to 3 days) of high heat and humidity with temperatures above 90 degrees. In extreme heat, evaporation is slowed and the body must work extra hard to maintain a normal temperature. This can lead to death by overworking the human body.


Read more ...
 Lower Shore Health Insurance Assistance Program