Springfield police warn of counterfeit pills circulating that contain fentanyl
The Springfield Police Department said they've seized "a large quantity of pills," and they've seen several overdoses.
The Springfield Police Department said it recently seized large quantities of pills that look like oxycodone but have been called Percocet. The counterfeit pills are believed to contain fentanyl and have caused several overdoses in the city, SPD said in a news release.
Oxycodone and Percocet are opioid pain medications that are commonly prescribed by physicians. Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that is up to 50 times stronger than heroin and 100 times stronger than morphine, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It’s a major contributor to fatal and nonfatal overdoses in the U.S., the CDC said.
There are two types of fentanyl: pharmaceutical fentanyl and illegally made fentanyl, according to the CDC, and both are considered synthetic opioids. Pharmaceutical fentanyl is prescribed by doctors to treat severe pain. But most recent cases of fentanyl-related overdose are linked to illegally made fentanyl. It’s often added to other drugs because of its extreme potency, which makes drugs cheaper, more powerful, more addictive, and more dangerous, the CDC said.
Fentanyl can be absorbed into the body via inhalation or skin contact.
“Illegally manufactured Fentanyl can be extremely dangerous and has been a major contributor to opioid-related overdoses,” said SPD in the statement.
The Springfield Police Department responded to 564 calls for service involving overdoses in 2022, with 35 total fatalities. So far this year, SPD has responded to 300 overdoses with 14 total fatalities.
Police urge anyone taking prescription medications to obtain them only from a licensed medical prescriber or pharmacy.