Over the past year, Fentanyl related overdose deaths have spiked amid the pandemic. Researchers have noticed the growing spread of street drugs laced with deadly synthetic opioids including fentanyl.
Dr. Nora Volkow, head of the National Institute of Drug Abuse, said people are often consuming fentanyl “unbeknownst to them,” resulting in a spike of overdose deaths. Most people are taking fentanyl unknowingly as it’s mixed with other drugs. Drug traffickers are mixing fentanyl with other drugs, including heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine, and MDMA, because it takes little to produce a high, making it a cheap option.
Riverside County District Attorney, Mike Hestrin, says fentanyl is “now in everything”. Hestrin explained that drug traffickers are using pill-making machines to create counterfeit drugs that look like prescription medications but actually contain fentanyl. He added that drug traffickers don’t have the sophisticated technology to accurately dose pills with non-lethal quantities of fentanyl, essentially leading to a game of Russian roulette.
The DEA explains on their website that unless a drug is prescribed by a licensed medical professional and dispensed by a legitimate pharmacy, you can’t know if it’s fake or legitimate. This leaves the user with the risk of a potentially lethal dose of fentanyl laced in their drug of choice.
- Fentanyl overdoses, deaths are up in Riverside County. Many don’t know they’ve taken it. (2021). https://www.desertsun.com/story/news/health/2021/07/30/fentanyl-overdoses-deaths-rise-riverside-county/8043736002/
- Facts about Fentanyl. United States Drug Enforcement Agency. (2020). https://www.dea.gov/resources/facts-about-fentanyl
USDTL hosted an online Webinar, titled ToxTime, where we discussed Newborn Alcohol Biomarkers.
The Webinar discussion included:
- What is FASD?
- The prevalence of FAS.
- The current methods available for detecting prenatal alcohol exposure.
- The importance of screening moms for alcohol.
- The importance of providers testing for alcohol, even if they do not have a direct plan of care for babies exposed to alcohol.
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USDTL is a proud member of The Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC). WBENC is a non-profit organization that is dedicated to helping women-owned business, like USDTL, thrive. As a member of WBENC, we have a mutual belief that diversity promotes innovation, open doors, and creates partnerships that help fuel the economy.
As a certified Women’s Business Enterprise, or WBE, USDTL went through a rigorous and stringent certification process to confirm that the business is owned, managed, and controlled by a woman or women. As a nationally certified WBE, we are able to network with other WBEs and collaborate with women-owned businesses to develop a mutually beneficial relationship.
To learn more about WBENC, visit https://www.wbenc.org/.
USDTL hosted an online Webinar, titled ToxTime, where we discussed Drug Trends and Concerns Regarding Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS).
The Webinar discussion included:
- A Brief Overview of NAS
- Withdrawal Symptoms
- Drug Withdrawal Variance
- USDTL Observations & Growing NAS Concerns
- Breaking the Stigma at Lily’s Place, a NAS Center
USDTL hosted an online Webinar, titled ToxTime, where we discussed Hair and Nail Testing – What’s the Difference?
The guest speaker was Joseph Jones, Ph.D., NRCC-TC, Chief Operating Officer at USDTL.
The webinar includes discussion around the following points:
- How Fingernail specimens can complement a hair testing program
- Using Fingernail as an alternative specimen type
- The difference in detection windows of Hair and Fingernail Specimens
- Case reports using both Hair and Fingernail specimens
USDTL hosted an online Webinar, titled ToxTime, where we discussed Environmental Exposure Drug Testing 101 (ChildGuard®). The guest speaker was Joesph Jones, Ph.D., NRCC-TC, Chief Operating Officer at USDTL.
The Webinar discussed why ChildGuard® was developed, and the value it brings to clients. Other points of discussion include:
- How drugs are incorporated in hair
- How fingernails can be used
- Legal defensibility of ChildGuard®
- Trends in ChildGuard® testing
The full webinar is available to watch below.https://www.usdtl.com/blog/toxtime-environmental-exposure-drug-testing-101-childguard
USDTL hosted an online Webinar, titled ToxTime, where we discussed Missed Opportunities in Newborn Drug Testing. The guest speakers were Colleen Cusack, Client Services Specialist at USDTL and Kristen Moore, MSN, RNC-OB, C-EFM, Director of Maternal Services at Union Hospital.
Colleen Cusack is USDTL’s Client Services Specialist. Colleen has 15 years of Client Services experience and has been with USDTL for 8 years. She consistently goes above and beyond to assist and advocate for the client. Colleen has clear communication skills, strives to practice active listening, is empathic, and is very knowledgeable. She plays a key role in improving the client’s experience and makes an impact on USDTL’s vision of Protecting and Enriching Lives.
Kristen Moore is a perinatal nurse experienced in providing optimal care to women with normal and complicated pregnancies. She has worked as a unit-based educator, clinical manager, chief nurse consultant for the Department of Health, and now serves as the Director of Maternal Child Services at Union Hospital in Terre Haute, Indiana. Kristen’s hospital began umbilical cord screening in November of 2020. Her team states they have experienced drastically improved reporting times with cord screening versus meconium, as well as other benefits including ease in collection and guaranteed availability of testing for all patients.
The Webinar discussed why universal collection is important in newborn drug testing, and the value it brings to hospitals. Other points of discussion include:
- Meconium and umbilical cord testing
- How rejections have improved with umbilical cord testing
- Criteria for testing
- Importance of obtaining an accurate history of abuse
- Testimonies and stories
The full webinar is available to watch below.https://www.usdtl.com/blog/coffee-tox-missed-opportunities
- Fentanyl Laced Drugs
- ToxTime: Newborn Alcohol Biomarkers
- Second Quarter Newsletter
- USDTL is a proud member of WBENC!
- ToxTime: Drug Trends & Concerns Regarding NAS
- ToxTime: Hair and Nail Testing – What’s the Difference?
- ToxTime: Environmental Exposure Drug Testing 101 (ChildGuard®)
- ToxTime: Missed Opportunities