A pilot program in Tennessee showed 81% of people who used the test strips changed their behavior.
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — East Tennessee will soon have another tool to combat the overdose crisis. Metro Drug Coalition said it’s expecting to receive its first shipment of fentanyl test strips in the next month or two.
“We’ve got to help them however we can,” said Anthony Jackson Jr., the director of prevention and early intervention services for the Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services. “This is a tool. It’s not the tool, but it’s a tool that we’re very happy to be able to provide to the state.”
Fentanyl strips can determine whether a substance has the deadly drug in a matter of minutes. A pilot program in Tennessee showed that 81% of people who used the test strips changed their behavior.
“It was interesting because it wasn’t just, ‘We use less,'” Jackson said. “No, it was, ‘I decided not to use.'”
State leaders hope that trend will continue as the test strips get distributed elsewhere, like East Tennessee.