Fentanyl epidemic kills an average two people a day in Canada in 2016.

Despite an emergency call and the approval of naloxone kits, the number of illicit drug deaths in B.C. is continuing to rise this year at a rate of about two each day, according to the latest statistics released by the BC Coroners Service. Tracking numbers for the first 10 months of 2016, the number of illicit drug overdoses was 622, compared to 397 for the same period last year.

Some websites are even providing an online how-to guide in making the Synthesis of Fentanyl easier. “Fentanyl and its analogs are among of the most powerful opiate agonists, but their synthesis we’re often hard. This is a synthesis of Fentanyl which can be easily adapted for the other analogs (para-Fluoro-Fentanyl, alpha-Methyl-Fentanyl).”

This procedure is not theoretical and has been tested and improved many times over. This synthesis is conducted at room temperature so you don’t need any special apparatus. It is perhaps that the optimization in manufacturing becoming far easier that could, in fact, indicate the increasing rise in Fentanyl-related deaths.

Although some indications are that it has been widely imported from countries like China. One Globe report suggests “Suppliers often ship drugs in packages under the 30-gram threshold, ensuring border agents won’t open them.” and “No problem of police coming to you, as the package would be labeled household detergent, complete with a certificate of analysis. Many suppliers will even offer guaranteed reshipment to customers in the event their package gets intercepted.”

With the hardest hit provinces being B.C and Alberta in the wake of such a lethal and deadly drug, it comes as no surprise people are looking for federal and provincial help in stemming the follow of Opioid epidemic now sweeping the provinces, but how best to provide a solution for such a systemic problem is still being debated.

Stopping the supply could be a monumental challenge when hidden in amongst such small packaging, as well as the ease at which it can be manufactured. With Burnaby RCMP making a bust of illicit Oxycontin last year (Sept 11, 2015) they showcased some of the seized machinery being employed.

Wondering if someone has  decided to take a chapter out of the popularized TV show Breaking Bad and bring it into the real world.

A few grains, equivalent to the size of three sugar crystals is the amount of pure fentanyl that is lethal. With the toxicity rate so high that even investigators become ill simply from seizing the illicit drugs, one can certainly appreciate the lethality and risk involved not only for the general public but also for investigators .

At any rate, it seems the supply chains and manufacturing capacity needs to be severed in order to stem the flow of the lethal product from hitting the streets. But with demand growing as a result of many prescriptions coming from doctors that easily get people “hooked” the demand is likely to keep growing.

With the drug spreading further eastwards, RCMP have growing concerns about the disturbing trend of the drug and its ready availability.