A lethal dose of reality

Illicit fentanyl is being distributed across the country including here in Illinois. Sold on the illegal drug market, Fentanyl is often mixed with other illicit drugs to increase its potency. It is sold as powders and nasal sprays, and increasingly pressed into pills made to look like legitimate prescription opioids or rainbow colored tablets that look like candy.

The tragic reality:  A very small dose of Fentanyl can be lethal.

Just two milligrams of fentanyl can be lethal depending on a person’s body size, tolerance and past usage.
According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Overdoses and poisoning are the third leading cause of death in kids and adolescents age 19 and younger. In 2022, the US Drug Enforcement Administration seized over 50 million fake prescription pills and more than 10,000 pounds of fentanyl. They found 42% of illegal pills tested for fentanyl contained at least 2 mg of fentanyl, considered a potentially lethal dose.

It is not just illegal drug users who have succumbed to a Fentanyl overdose. Too many children have been exposed to fentanyl, some in their parents' homes and in one horrific case in their daycare. Fentanyl is 100 times more potent than morphine and 50 times more potent than heroin. It only takes the smallest amount to poison or kill a young child.

In this episode of Capitol Crimes, lawmakers discuss their efforts to combat illicit fentanyl and protect children from its dangers.