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Lake County PHO Warns of ‘Laced Pills’ and Encourages Use of Opioid Overdose Reversal Drug

The following is a press release issued by Lake County Public Health:

[Picture from WikiCommons]

The County of Lake Health Services Department, Public Health Division, was saddened and troubled to learn of tragic recent deaths in Lake County that may have resulted from non-prescribed opiates or other drugs compromised, or “laced,” with an opioid pain management drug.

Immediate concerns remain, and Lake County residents in possession of non-prescription drugs, and particularly MDMA, should not take them, as they may be laced.

Opioids are highly addictive, and it is a common and regrettable practice that producers and traffickers of illicit drugs, such as MDMA, methamphetamine and cocaine, “lace” their product with an opioid, to enhance its addictive properties. Despite ongoing public education campaigns, opioid overdoses and deaths increased in many parts of the country in 2020.

Naloxone (NARCAN, EVZIO) Saves Lives and is Available to Many Free of Charge

Many Lake County residents qualify for the Partnership Health Plan, Medicare, or a similar programs, and these individuals, as well as clients of Lake County Tribal Health Consortium and many others, can access Naloxone free of charge. Naloxone can reverse the effects of opioid overdose, and its timely administration has saved many lives. EVZIO, an autoinjectable form, and NARCAN, a prepackaged nasal spray, are two common trade names.

It is estimated 90% of those prescribed opioids for pain management in Lake County have access to Naloxone from their medical providers. The National Institute on Drug Abuse also reports, “major pharmacy chains CVS and Walgreens now make Naloxone available without a personal prescription in all stores in the U.S.”

If you may be at risk of opioid overdose, contact your medical provider proactively, to understand your options.

More information on Naloxone is available here:https://www.drugabuse.gov/…/opioid-overdose-reversal…

If you are in possession of pills you are concerned may be unsafe, they can be anonymously disposed of in a SafeRx Disposal Drop Box in the Lake County Sheriff’s Office’s lobby, at 1220 Martin Street. No contact with a deputy is required.

Thank you for taking steps to ensure your own safety, and the safety of those you love.

Gary Pace, MD, MPH

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