Fentanyl Awareness Day is May 9

Narcan and fentanyl testing strips now available for students, staff, and faculty

National Fentanyl Awareness Day is Tuesday, May 9. 

Naloxone (brand name Narcan) is now available for students, staff and faculty on the UC Santa Cruz campus. Naloxone is a life-saving medication used to reverse a drug overdose. According to provisional data from the CDC, in 2021 more than 71,000 people died from synthetic opioid-related drug overdose in the United States. Data from the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) indicates fentanyl is involved in more deaths of Americans under 50 than any cause of death, including heart disease, cancer, homicide, suicide and other accidents.

Student Health Outreach and Promotion (SHOP) at the Student Health Center and the Cove, the UCSC Collegiate Recovery Program, have offered free Naloxone and Fentanyl Testing Strips to students since February 2022. In partnership with the CDPH Naloxone Distribution Project, the program further expanded in January of this year.

As part of the program, students have several opportunities to pick up harm reduction resources across campus. This service is free and confidential, and SHOP health educator staff offer a safe, non-judgemental space to train students on the proper use of both the medication and the test strips. SHOP Peer Educators have also been trained to distribute supplies and answer questions about them.  

Distribution sites and instructions for students are available on the SHOP website, with quick pick up options and opportunities for informational sessions with the peer led Party Safe Team. 

Risk Services provides Naloxone for staff and faculty at no cost and details can be found on the UCSC Employee Wellness website

Additional Resources:

What is the Campus Opioid Safety Act?

FDA Approves First Over-the-Counter Naloxone Nasal Spray