Some new details have emerged surrounding the two overdoses that occurred over the weekend.
On both December 31 and 29, Swift Current City RCMP responded with other emergency services to two separate overdoses. Both the individuals, a 30-year-old man and a 27-year-old man, were unable to be resuscitated by emergency services. Since then, more details about the substances used in these incidents have come to light.
Officers who utilized test kits on the scene found traces of fentanyl mixed in with other unspecified tested substances. Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that is 50-100 times stronger than morphine. It is used in modern medicine as a pain medication, but unfortunately, it is also used illegally in recreational drug use.
In this incident, fentanyl was found in both of the different substances RCMP found at the separate incidents. One of which was a green powder, and the other was a white cyrstaline substance. Both were found to contain traces of fentanyl when tested with field kits.
As little as 2mg of fentanyl can be a lethal dose.
Swift Current City RCMP's Staff Sergeant, Evan Gordon, shared the details alongside caution for those who partake in illicit substances.
"When you're using illicit substances, having Narcan and Naloxone within reach, although they're possible life-saving measures, doesn't necessarily mean that that's going to work," said Gordon.
Narcan is a nasal spray that utilizes naloxone, a medication that is used to reverse the effects of opioids. While the nasal spray is effective, it takes time and is not a guarantee when treating the symptoms of an overdose.
It's worth noting that while the field tests used are good, they are not of the same veracity as medical or forensic tests. These kits are used to help quickly identify a substance so that responders can be effective in identifying what may be causing symptoms or what they are being exposed to in their investigations. Further testing may reveal additional information.
"These are not safe substances," said Gordon. "There's no quality control, so the best bet is to seek help, whether it's through community health services, mental health and addictions, or N.A."
For those looking for help in Swift Current, the folks over at Cypress Regional Hospital are equipped to help people through their mental health and addiction specialists. The RCMP also has the ability to help, via their officers and crisis team worker.
These services are also available to anyone who is a loved one or who may be close to anyone struggling with addiction and requires someone to talk to.