DES MOINES, Iowa (WHO) — Banning pills laced with fentanyl is gaining bipartisan support in the nation’s capital.
In 2021, the Iowa Department of Public Health said it caused 87% of overdose deaths in Iowa, and it’s not going unnoticed. Senator Charles Grassley hopes legislators can put a stop to the trend.
“Fentanyl overdoses have now become the number one cause of death among U.S. adults ages 18-45,” said Sen. Grassley.
IDPH officials said for the first time in Polk County, fentanyl is contributing to more deaths than meth. In July of 2021, Carlisle High School senior-to-be, 17-year-old Sebastian Kidd overdosed on a pill he thought was Percocet but was laced with fentanyl.
Last month, Grassley, who is co-chair of the Caucus on International Narcotics Control, introduced a bipartisan bill that would increase penalties for distributing counterfeit pills containing Fentanyl.
The “Stop Pills That Kill Act,” would also require the DEA to provide congress with a comprehensive plan of attack against pills containing deadly substances like fentanyl. The powdery substance is lethal in doses that are as small as two grains of salt.
Early this month, Grassley said, “We are in the middle of the most destructive and challenging drug environment this country has ever seen.”
Last week, a bipartisan U.S. House companion bill was also proposed to help fight the fentanyl crisis.