Federal officials from multiple agencies struggled to crackdown on a massive influx of drugs flowing across the US-Mexico border, with new data showing the amount of fentanyl seized by authorities doubled during the last 12 months.
“In the period from October 2020 to September 2021, Customs and Border Protection officials seized 11,201 pounds of fentanyl,” reports the New York Post. “One kilogram of fentanyl is equivalent to 500,000 lethal doses, the federal government estimates, meaning the seizures represent 2.5 billion doses prevented from entering the country.”
“If they’re seizing a lot, it’s because a lot is coming in — because you don’t know the percentage of how much is coming through that they’re actually seizing,” said Dr. Joshua Sharfstein, vice dean for public health practice and community engagement at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.
“Only a very small concentration of fentanyl is needed in order to produce a high. So, this makes it much easier to bring fentanyl across the border — in smaller, but more potent, quantities than other drugs,” Dr. Nora Volkow, director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse, told the Washington Examiner.
“Based on the number of drug seizures reported in 2020 for fentanyl, it appears that the illicit drug market did not suffer during the pandemic, but actually expanded,” she continued. “Rising fentanyl availability, decreased access to addiction treatment, increased social and economic stressors, and overburdened health departments collided in 2020 and were associated with a tragic rise in overdose deaths.”
Read the full report at the New York Post.