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What is Fentanyl?
Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that was originally developed as a painkiller. Compared to morphine, it is 50 times more deadly than heroin and 100 times more deadly than morphine. As fentanyl has become popular worldwide, it has transformed the illegal drug market and raised the risk of overdose. In 2020-2021, over 100,00 Americans died of fentanyl overdose, surpassing suicide, gun violence, and car accidents.
Two milligrams, about the size of five grains of salt, of fentanyl can kill. Illicit fentanyl comes in different forms, such as powder, pill, or liquid. Emergency responders are at risk of being overdosed by coming into contact with the illicit fentanyl by:
The following job categories may have the potential for exposure to illicit drugs:
To help prevent exposure to illicit drugs, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) recommended that trained emergency responders wear powder-free nitrile gloves with a minimum thickness of 5±2 mil (i.e., 0 .127 +- 0.051 millimeters; 1 mil=0.0254 millimeters) when dealing with illicit drugs. FDA requires gloves must be tested against fentanyl to claim resistance.
At Unimed Medical Supply, we provide many products that meet or exceed NIOSH and FDA recommendations and guidelines for handling fentanyl.