Home > Dail Eireann debate. Written answer 200 - substance misuse [30343/17] [Fentanyl].

[Oireachtas] Dail Eireann debate. Written answer 200 - substance misuse [30343/17] [Fentanyl]. (28 Jun 2017)

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200. Deputy Jonathan O'Brien asked the Minister for Health if representatives from his Department or the HSE have met with members of An Garda Síochána and discussed recent reports of heroin and cocaine in circulation that is laced with fentanyl; his plans to address this; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30343/17]


Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Catherine Byrne): My Department and the Health Service Executive have a range of mechanisms for sharing information about the drugs situation with An Garda Síochána, including the Early Warning Emerging Trends Sub-Committee (EWET) of the National Advisory Committee on Drugs and Alcohol and the HSE Public Alert System for adverse events due to drugs.


The EWET provides a forum for representatives from my Department, An Garda Síochána, the Health Service Executive and other experts to exchange information on emerging trends and patterns in drug use. Fentanyl and some of its analogues have been on the agenda of the EWET meetings. In this regard, the Committee has discussed overdose cases identified by Emergency Departments where Fentanyl has been mixed with or mistaken for other opioids, such as heroin.


Another key mechanism is the HSE public alert system for adverse events due to drugs. The HSE remains vigilant for the possibility of Fentanyl entering circulation in Ireland.  I am informed that the HSE last issued an alert for Fentanyl on 28 July 2016, arising from a number of drug-related deaths in Dublin and Cork. The HSE has not issued any further warnings/alerts since then, as there is no evidence to suggest this substance is currently in circulation in this jurisdiction. However, the HSE maintains on-going communications with An Garda Síochána in relation to adverse events due to drugs.

Item Type:Dail Debates
Date:28 June 2017
Subjects:B Substances > Opioids (opiates)
B Substances > Opioids (opiates) > Opioid product > Fentanyl
MM-MO Crime and law > Substance related offence > Drug offence > Illegal drug possession (seizures)
VA Geographic area > Europe > Ireland

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