EDC DrPH student Kathleen Creppage publishes paper on Early Warning System in Opioid Crisis
Stamp bags are small wax packets that contain mixtures of illicit drugs, most commonly heroin, packaged for sale and sometimes stamped with a graphical logo by drug dealers to market their contents. In just two years, the powerful opioid fentanyl went from nonexistent to detected in more than 1 in 7 stamp bags analyzed by the Allegheny County Office of the Medical Examiner.
The findings, published in the journal Public Health Reports, suggest that real-time information about stamp bags can be used to supplement current public health surveillance measures and could serve as an early warning of new illegal drugs of high lethality available at the local level. It is the first robust and detailed public health report of a stamp bag surveillance system.
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