How to use fentanyl test strips

Fentanyl, a deadly opioid, is being added to drugs like heroin, cocaine, and pills. Even if pills look real - they may not be. They might contain fentanyl. Fentanyl test strips can tell you whether there is fentanyl in drugs.

How to test for fentanyl

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Prepare

After preparing a shot, add water to what's left. For powder or pills, crush in a bag and add water.

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Test

Mix the water and the drugs well, and then dip the test strip in water up to the wavy lines.

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Results

Wait 2 minutes. One red line means the drugs have fentanyl. Two red lines mean the test is negative.

What should you do after you test the drugs?

If the drugs test positive for fentanyl, anyone using them should have naloxone with them and should use with someone who isn’t using at the same time. That way, if there's an overdose, someone can call 911 and give naloxone.

Start slow. Use a little bit and wait to see how strong it is. If it feels off, consider not using or taking less. Even if the test is negative, be careful. The drugs may still be mixed with fentanyl or something else the strips can't find.

Where can you get fentanyl test strips?

Each test strip costs about a dollar, but they’re often available for free at local health departments, needle exchange programs, or other community-based organizations. They also can be purchased online at dancesafe.org, bunkpolice.com, and even amazon.com.

Are fentanyl test strips legal where you live?

In the past, many states didn't allow people to own — or distribute — drug testing materials. Now, state laws are catching up to the fentanyl crisis. In 34 states, and the District of Columbia, it's legal to have fentanyl test strips, distribute them, or both. And even in states where it's not strictly legal, people are rarely punished for using test strips.

 

States where fentanyl test strips are legal

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Last Updated: August, 2023, Network for Public Health Law
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