LISTEN – How much more horrible will it get? –  

August 13, 2020 – Making matters worse is a separate trend: Street drugs are often more dangerous now because more dealers are lacing products with a deadly synthetic opioid called fentanyl. This means when people relapse, they’re at greater risk.

“I had a young lady reach out to me, heroin wasn’t even her drug of choice,” Austin said. “She tried it for the first time and it wasn’t heroin, it was fentanyl. She overdosed.”

Indeed, the rapid spread of illicit fentanyl into more parts of the U.S. was already unraveling years of effort aimed at reducing overdose deaths.  “Basically all the progress we made has now been reversed. And this is even before the pandemic,” said Adm. Brett Giroir, assistant secretary for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

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