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Prevalence of Fentanyl and Its Analogues in a Court-Ordered Mandatory Drug Testing Population

Award Information

Award #
Funding Category
Competitive Discretionary
Congressional District
Funding First Awarded
Total funding (to date)

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2019, $239,196)

The purpose of this research is to enhance the understanding of the prevalence of fentanyl and analogue use among criminal offenders, and to improve drug trend indicators. Limited information is available on prevalence data in the court-ordered mandatory drug testing (COMDT) population to characterize drug use patterns. While forensic toxicology examinations are regularly performed for human performance testing (e.g. drugged-driving) and post-mortem examinations, COMDT is typically limited to general drug testing panels using urine, blood, or oral fluid samples which only indicate recent drug use (e.g., past 2 days). COMDT using hair, which offers a greater detection window (up to 6 months) does not often test for fentanyl and its analogues (specifically). To overcome this limitation, the applicant proposes to develop and conduct new tests on hair samples previously submitted for standard testing. Findings will provide information on fentanyl and other drug use prevalence among a COMDT population for a greater detection window than urine, blood, or oral fluid. The research will inform policy makers and other stakeholders in decisions to update routine testing protocols. Positive drug tests from COMDT programs can serve as early warning indicators to public safety and public health agencies, and help determine the necessary scale of prevention and intervention strategies. Results will be analyzed in comparison to general workforce drug testing results, National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS) arrest data, and other drug indicator data.

"Note: This project contains a research and/or development component, as defined in applicable law," and complies with Part 200 Uniform Requirements - 2 CFR 200.210(a)(14). CA/NCF

Date Created: September 13, 2019