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It's been just over two years since Prince died of an overdose caused by taking what turned out to be fake Vicodin laced with fentanyl. We're hearing the word fentanyl show up in more and more news stories as the cause of overdoses during the ongoing opioid crisis, so we thought now would be a good time to dig deeper into the topic. We're joined by Brenda Iliff, Executive Director of the Hazelden Betty Ford facility in Naples, for a bit of a history lesson about the drug, and how it's winding up on the streets.

The U.S. military’s Southern Command, or Southcom, hosted a summit of experts in Miami Thursday on America’s growing opioid crisis. Among them was Jim Walsh, the deputy assistant secretary of state for international narcotics.

Walsh told WLRN one of his big concerns is the growing potential for increased production of fentanyl – widely considered the most addictive and dangerous opioid. Walsh said in the past China has been the sole source of fentanyl. But there are signs it’s now being produced in this hemisphere:

Florida is enacting tough new penalties on dealers of the synthetic opioid fentanyl.

Scott Signs Fentanyl, Pollution Notification Bills

Jun 15, 2017

Gov. Rick Scott signed measures Wednesday that will impose minimum mandatory sentences on people who traffic in the dangerous drug fentanyl and require increased public notification of pollution incidents.

A new report from Florida medical examiners finds fentanyl caused more deaths than any other drug in Florida last year.