PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. — Fentanyl is now the most lethal drug in Florida, killing thousands between the ages of 35 and 50 years old, according to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.
Seven years since I lost Rory,” said Cindy Singer. “His birthday is on Monday.”
Singer said her son Rory didn’t stand a chance against fentanyl.
“He passed from an overdose, an accidental overdose,” she said.
A synthetic opioid developed to manage pain for cancer patients, 50 to 100 times stronger than morphine, is killing thousands.
“The numbers aren’t going down, they’re getting worse,” Singer said.
Bearing the pain no mother should ever have to, Singer found Staci Katz, another mom helping her son with substance use.
Together they formed the nonprofit Our 2 Sons to help educate families and help people into recovery.
“Lsten to the warnings, because everything is laced,” Katz said.
The Florida Department of Law enforcement said illegal fentanyl is being manufactured in Mexico and mixed with counterfeit prescription pills like Xanax and Adderall. Users are unknowingly taking fentanyl. DEA lab testing shows that six out of 10 fentanyl-laced fake prescription pills contain a potentially lethal dose of fentanyl. FDLE said last year 6,000 people died because of the drug.
“Unfortunately, experimentation or if a prescribed medication is not available, people feel the need they have to go to the street or the black market,” Micah Robbins said. “It’s the wild west.”
Robbins, with the Palm Beach County Behavioral Health Coalition, said it’s important for people to heed the warnings.
“Especially right now during the holidays,” Robbins said. “In our world, the prevention world, we know this is one of the most critical times of year.”
There is hope on the horizon. The University of Houston Research Team has developed a vaccine to block fentanyl’s ability to enter the brain. Clinical trials are coming soon. Narcan does the same thing if administered moments after an overdose.
“It does, it saves lives,” Singer said.
Together these moms and local organizations are doing what they can to offer help and hope.
“I must continue to be my son’s voice,” Singer said.