CNN’s latest reports regarding the fight against opioid crisis are pretty interesting. It seems that there’s a new controversial tool that emerged in the battle against overdose-related deaths. It is a strip that lets people who are using street drugs such as heroin and cocaine test whether the drugs are laced with fentanyl or not.
If the drugs happen to test positive, people can choose not to use them, or at least use less.
A new report coming from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that fentanyl is the deadliest drug in the US and it’s linked to about 29% of all overdose deaths dating back in 2016.
This synthetic opioid is 80-100 times stronger than morphine, and it produces a really powerful high. It’s also really cheap, and when it’s mixed into street drugs, the buyer doesn’t always know this.
Fentanyl strip tech was created by a Canadian company
CNN reported that the fentanyl strip tech had been initially developed by a Canadian biotech company called BTNX to test urine samples to check for the presence of the deadly drug.
“The strips work basically the same way when they’re dipped in the residue of cooked heroin or when a little water is added to empty baggies of cocaine,” CNN writes.
In other words, this works like a pregnancy test in reverse. What we mean is that one strip suggests that the drugs are positive for fentanyl and two lines mean a negative result.
The test strips worked to detect even low concentrations of fentanyl in street drugs.
“Our findings bring to the table evidence that can inform a public health approach to the fentanyl crisis. Smart strategies that reduce harm can save lives,” Susan Sherman, a co-author on the study, stated.
The Trump administration’s assistant secretary of Health and Human Services for Mental Health and substance use, Dr. Elinore McCance-Katz, does not agree on using these test strips and you can see the reasons here.
I have been blogging and posting articles for over eight years, but my passion for writing dates back in 2000. I am especially enthusiastic about technology, science, and health-related issues. When I’m not researching and writing the latest news, I’m either watching sci-fi and horror movies or checking out places worth visiting and building deep memories for later in life. I believe in empathy and continually improving myself.