As Nitazenes hits the streets, DOJ issues grants

The Department of Justice grants a right to subsidize drug addiction epidemics because a new synthetic opioid has been identified.


The Department of Justice (DOJ) Office of Justice Programs (OJP) recently announced it will provide grants totaling more than $ 300 million to help tackle the growing drug abuse crisis in the country, which s ‘is worsened during the coronavirus pandemic. The OJP’s Office of Justice Assistance (BJA) and the Office of Juvenile Justice and Crime Prevention (OJJDP) are distributing millions of grants to combat the crisis. Additionally, OJP is providing $ 34 million to help communities respond to public safety and public health emergencies, especially those associated with the drug addiction epidemic.

“Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the country is experiencing a dramatic increase in opioid and stimulant abuse and overdoses,” said Attorney General Merrick B. Garland. “The Department of Justice is committed to supporting programs aimed at tackling the drug addiction crisis that is devastating communities across the country. “

Photo by Szymon Shields from Pexels

Recent data released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) illustrates: “There were approximately 100,306 drug overdose deaths in the United States during the 12-month period ending April 2021, a 28.5% increase from 78,056 deaths in the same period the previous year.

Federal agencies also recently announced that not only if there was an increase in fentanyl diverted for illicit purposes, a new synthetic opioid would have hit the streets – nitazenes. This class of opioids has been found in syringes reviewed by scientists nationwide, and forensic experts have found that the syringes used in some overdoses contain the drug. Nitazenes are up to “20 times more potent than fentanyl”. Fentanyl itself is “50 times more potent than heroin and 80 to 100 times more potent than morphine.”

“Every time a cheaper, more potent drug is introduced to the illegal drug market, the number of overdose deaths increases,” said Dr Rebecca Donald, assistant professor of anesthesiology and pain medicine at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Tennessee. She added, “Synthetic opioids, such as fentanyl, have overtaken heroin, and in the past year our country has seen more opioid overdose deaths than ever before. “

Dr Scott Krakower, psychiatrist at Zucker Hillside Hospital in Glen Oaks, New York, explained: “The general lack of knowledge of [nitazenes] can lead to unexpected death, especially when combined with other agents such as benzodiazepines and fentanyl.

Alex Krotulski, PhD, Associate Director of the Center for Forensic Science Research & Education, added, “Nitazenes are the most popular subclass of new synthetic opioids… Many factors play a role in the increase in opioid overdoses . However, it is not so easy to always understand the extent of the impact of a new opioid.

Amy L. Solomon, OJP Senior Assistant Attorney General, said of the Department of Justice grant: “The substance use crisis in American society has been a persistent and deadly problem for decades. , and fentanyl and illicitly manufactured synthetic opioids have tightened the grip of drugs on our society. The Biden-Harris administration is working diligently to address these issues by committing unprecedented levels of funding for research, addiction treatment, and mental health services, as well as investments in enforcement, response and development. evidence-based treatment.

OIP provides grants, training, technical assistance and other resources to help prevent crime, advance racial justice, and assist victims of crises.

Sources:

Justice Department Provides More Than $ 300 Million To Address Opioid And Stimulant Crisis And To Address Substance Use Disorders

New opioids called nitazenes may be 20 times more potent than fentanyl

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