Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid used for treating severe pain, and is 50 to 100 times more potent than morphine. Illicit fentanyl has been found in many drugs, and testing reveals that 6 out of 10 fentanyl-laced fake prescription pills contain a potentially lethal dose of fentanyl. Over the past decade, California has seen an increase in fentanyl-involved overdose deaths. In 2021 alone, nearly 6,000 Californians died from overdoses involving fentanyl.
This rise in overdose deaths emphasized the critical importance of ensuring that individuals who are most at risk of an overdose have access to necessary care. Even in small doses, fentanyl can be deadly, and many people may be unaware that their drugs are laced with fentanyl.
The following resources and webpages have more information on fentanyl and how to prevent overdoses:
Resources from the California Department of Public Health (CDPH)
- Fentanyl Testing to Prevent Overdose: Information for people who use drugs and health care providers.
- Fentanyl and Fentanyl Test Strips FAQs: Information regarding fentanyl and test strips to prevent drug overdose.
Resources from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
- Fentanyl Facts: Information for people wanting to learn more about fentanyl.
- Fentanyl Test Strips: Learn more about a low-cost method of helping prevent drug overdoses and reducing harm.
- Lifesaving Naloxone: Information about naloxone, a life-saving medication that can reverse an overdose from opioids.
- Protect Yourself from the Dangers of Fentanyl: A short video that summarizes how to protect yourself from fentanyl.