U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price praised China for their efforts toward cracking down on synthetic opioids. At a meeting in Beijing on August 21, he declared that China has proven to be an “incredible partner” in the struggle against opioid addiction in America.
China has long been considered to be a primary source of synthetic opioids, such as new derivatives of fentanyl, which can prove to be incredibly dangerous once they make their way to the U.S. market. While these synthetic opioids produce a high similar to heroin, they can be far more potent, increasing the likelihood of an overdose.
On July 1, Deng Ming, the deputy director of China’s National Narcotics Control Commission, added four more synthetic drugs to China’s list of controlled substances, including the infamous synthetic opioid U-47700 — which had been considered a legal alternative for fentanyl — along with other more potent synthetic opioids, such as carfentanil.
In 2016, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration identified U-47700 as one of the most dangerous drugs currently regulated, citing connections with dozens of fatalities.
Although China denies any firm evidence supporting the claim that it’s the source of many synthetic opioids that flood the American market, the two countries have begun a working partnership to help combat the spread of these drugs as the opioid addiction epidemic intensifies.
Illegally produced synthetic opioids, such as the four substances banned by China last month, are especially dangerous because they can be similar in appearance to other opioids and be disguised as pills that are… (continue reading)