Advocacy Update

Oct. 8, 2021: State Advocacy Update


After seizing more than 9.5 million counterfeit pills in 2021, many of them containing deadly amounts of illegally manufactured fentanyl, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has issued a public health advisory about record numbers of counterfeit pills being made to look like prescription medication.

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According to the DEA, the counterfeits “are made to look like prescription opioids such as oxycodone (Oxycontin®, Percocet®), hydrocodone (Vicodin®) and alprazolam (Xanax®); or stimulants like amphetamines (Adderall®).”

The DEA also emphasized that, “this alert does not apply to legitimate pharmaceutical medications prescribed by medical professionals and dispensed by pharmacists.”

The AMA supports educating people about the risks of taking drugs that have not been prescribed to them, increasing access to treatment for substance use disorders and multiple harm reduction options to help save lives from a drug-related overdose, including:

Additional resources on the drug overdose epidemic are available at End the Overdose Epidemic and by contacting the AMA Advocacy Resource Center.