Growing concerns over fentanyl on college campuses as drug-related deaths continue to rise

Raleigh, N.C. — Timothy Parker, a North Carolina State University student who lived off-campus, died on Monday from fentanyl poisoning, marking the 10th student death from the campus this school year. Parker was described as “smart and positive.” College students are particularly vulnerable to substance abuse, with 18-25-year-olds being at the greatest risk, especially with deadly fentanyl being found in nearly all illicit drugs, according to the National Center for Drug Abuse Statistics.

Last spring, two Ohio State University students died from apparent drug overdoses, as health officials warned that fake Adderall pills may contain fentanyl. In response, the life-saving drug naloxone, known by the brand name Narcan, is becoming more widely available on college campuses across the nation. Ohio officials are installing emergency naloxone access cabinets on public college and university campuses throughout the state.

When administered, naloxone can reverse an opioid-related overdose by blocking the effects of opioids on the brain and quickly restoring breathing. Officials say the wall-mounted emergency access cabinet, similar to an AED machine, will provide an effective and easy way for the public to access the medication.

If you or someone you know needs help for substance use disorder you can check out these resources.