Fentanyl is adding to the alarming rise of overdose deaths
Written by Lucas Kibby, CleanFleet
Powerful synthetic opioid often added to heroin, sold as heroin to unsuspecting users
The 2016 National Drug Threat Assessment (NDTA), which details the extent to which illicit drugs are affecting the United States, continues to illuminate the nationwide opioid epidemic, which is fueling a growing heroin user population and resulting in a greater amount of overdoses.
According to the Center for Disease and Control (CDC), in 2014, more than 28,000 people died of opioid overdoses, 129 people every day as a result of drug poisoning, and 61% are pharmaceutical opioid or heroin related.
This opioid epidemic has been worsened by the national reemergence of fentanyl – a synthetic opioid which is sometimes prescribed to treat severe pain, such as in cancer patients. Fentanyl is significantly more potent that Heroin (40-50 times stronger) and carries a high risk of overdose.
Illicit fentanyl, manufactured in foreign countries and then smuggled into the United States, is a rising factor in the current overdose epidemic. It is usually mixed into heroin products or pressed into counterfeit prescription pills, sometimes without the users’ awareness, which often leads to overdose.
“Sadly, this report reconfirms that opioids such as heroin and fentanyl – and diverted prescription pain pills – are killing people in this country at a horrifying rate,” said Acting Administrator Rosenberg “We face a public health crisis of historic proportions. Countering it requires a comprehensive approach that includes law enforcement, education, and treatment.”
Other Finding in the NDTA Report
The NDTA report also finds that heroin overdose deaths are high across the United States, particularly in the Northeast and Midwest. Nationally, overdose deaths more than tripled between 2010 and 2014, with the most recent available data reporting 10,574 people in the United States died in 2014 from heroin overdoses.
Methamphetamine continues to be readily available throughout the United States, and methamphetamine distribution and use continues to contribute to violent and property crime in the United States.
Cocaine availability and use in the United States increased across multiple fronts between 2014 and 2015 and is likely to continue increasing in the near term.
Can Companies Screen For Fentanyl and the other Drugs With A Urine Drug Test?
Yes, a urine sample can be used to look for Fentanyl during a drug test. It can be detectable in urine for 1-2 days after use but detection times may vary based on a person’s metabolism, how much they took, and other factors.
Urine testing is the most common screening method and detects recent use, typically in the previous one to three days. It is suitable for all testing reasons – from pre-employment to random to post-accident – and can be performed for a wide range of illicit and prescription drugs.
- Cannabinoid (THC)
- Opiates (codeine, morphine, 6-acetylmorphine, heroin)
- Phencyclidine (PCP)
Contact CleanFleet today to discuss adding Fentanyl screening to your company’s drug testing policy or to set up a drug testing program at 503-479-6082.