Synthetic opioids to be banned as government acts to stop drug-related deaths
Eleven more lethal substances are to be made Class A drugs, following advice from the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs.
“On the recommendation of the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs (ACMD) 10 additional Nitazenes and Brorphine will be made Class A substances”Home Office spokesperson
As they are classified as “Class A” drugs it makes both the possession and supply of these substances illegal. Anyone who is caught supplying them will face up to life in prison, an unlimited fine, or both.
These drugs are psychoactive substances and can be more lethal than fentanyl. The Home Office spokesperson went on to add that the drugs were often mixed into other pills sold on the street.
The Home Office announced that the following substances will be added to Class A of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971, subject to parliamentary approval:
- Etodesnitazene (etazene)
- Metodesnitazene (metazene)
- N-Piperidinyl-etonitazene (etonitazepipne)
- N-Pyrrolidino-etonitazene (etonitazepyne)
Why synthetic opioids are dangerous and need to be taken seriously
An important consideration is that opiates (like heroin or morphine) are often taken alongside opiate substitutes and synthetic opioids. In these circumstances, there is an increased risk of accidental overdose and long-term health complications.
Street synthetic opiates are particularly dangerous, as there is no quality control. Individuals will often not be aware of exactly what they are taking. Some of these drugs have been shown to be stronger than morphine, so it is important that they are identified quickly.
Government action on the synthetic opioid crisis
Policing Minister, Chris Philp, said: “We must stop these lethal drugs from reaching our streets. To prevent more tragic deaths and other harmful consequences of addiction, from violent crime to antisocial behaviour.”
The move comes as a UK Drugs Ministerial was held yesterday. With ministers and experts from across the UK looking to form a UK-wide approach to tackling substance misuse.
The Department of Health and Social Care has also announced £53m will go to 28 local authorities in England to provide housing support to people in drug and alcohol treatment.
How this affects drug testing
At Atkinson Lewis, we frequently have test results that demonstrate that reportedly used drugs are very impure or have been adulterated with other illegal substances.
How drug and alcohol testing can be a vital tool in the identification of those needing treatment and support;
- Early identification of people in need
Testing can be used to identify people misusing substances
- Monitor whether the program is working
Repeat testing can be used to track whether misusers are reducing their use/abstaining
- Hair Testing could be used to assess patterns of misuse
This could be used to help decide the course of treatments
Atkinson Lewis always recommends that samples are tested for as many drugs as possible. We work together with Cansford Laboratory in identifying the trends in substance misuse to provide a robust assessment.
Delegates shared data on drug-related deaths. This data included impacts of poly-substance misuse, as well as drug supply and use across the UK.
For more information about the services we provide, please contact us.
How Can We Help You Today?
We’re here to assist with private and public law cases in the Family Courts. If you’ve got a question, need a cost or you’re ready with an instruction, give us some details and we’ll get back to you quickly.