MOBILE COUNTY, Alabama (WKRG) – The Drug Enforcement Administration issues a public safety alert after a nationwide increase in fake prescription pills.
According to the DEA, more than 9.5 million counterfeit pills have been seized this year alone. This has more numbers this year than in the past two years combined.
These drugs sold on the black market could potentially contain fentanyl and methamphetamine.
According to the DEA, it only takes a small amount of these illegal substances to overdose – a pencil-sized dose of fentanyl could be fatal,
Virginia Guy, executive director of the Mobile Drug Education Council Virginia Guy, said any substance you buy on the street should be considered suspicious and dangerous.
âUnless you get your prescription from a doctor and fill it at a legitimate pharmacy, this is the only way to ensure your medications are safe,â Guy said.
These fake prescription pills look almost identical to the real prescription pill.
The DEA says these counterfeit pills are usually made to look like real drugs like Oxytocin, Percocet, Hydrocodone, Vicodin, Xanax, or Adderall.
Guy said, even locally, that she spoke to several families of victims who accidentally lost their lives.
âThis has been a growing situation,â Guy said. âIt’s really even very alarming now. I have spoken to several families who have lost loved ones who thought they were taking something that was a legitimate pill and ended up being something harmful.
For those who are addicted to prescription drugs, Guy wants community members to know that they are not alone and that help is available to them.
âHelp is available, so if anyone knows someone or has a loved one who has crossed this line of dependency, please ask for help,â Guy said.
If you or someone you know needs help with drug addiction, contact the Drug Education Council at 251-478-7855.