National Fentanyl Awareness Day is a day of action where hundreds of businesses, nonprofit organizations, and government offices work together to ensure Americans understand the risks of fentanyl, educate their families and friends, and learn how they can take steps to prevent overdose deaths.

Currently, fentanyl is being found in nearly all street drugs, including cocaine and heroin, and in fake pills being sold on social media and in communities across the country. Fentanyl is now involved in more deaths of Americans under 50 than any other cause, including heart disease, cancer, homicide, suicide, and other accidents.

Impact In The Dakotas

  • Access the North Dakota Unintentional Drug Overdose Death 2023 Legislative Report which highlights the issue, including total number of overdose deaths as well as the drug substance listed as cause of death.
  • The South Dakota Department of Health State Unintentional Overdose Reporting System collects comprehensive data on unintentional and undetermined intent drug overdose deaths.

National Fentanyl Awareness Poster

Initiated by parents who have lost children to this crisis, National Fentanyl Awareness Day is supported by a coalition of experts, corporations, nonprofits, schools, families and elected officials who are working to empower our youth and their families. Take action today by doing these few things:

  • Please watch this 27-minute film The New Drug Talk to educate your team/community about the dangers of fentanyl and fake pills in the new and rapidly changing drug landscape
  • Share on social media to get the word out to your community about National Fentanyl Awareness Day and the dangers of fentanyl. Use the hashtags #NationalFentanylAwarenessDay & #JustSayKNOW to further the message. Gain access to all social media images here
  • Access the National Fentanyl Awareness Toolkit to see how you and your organization can spread awareness.

There are ways we can be prepared as individuals and healthcare professionals and respond accordingly during/before a potential fentanyl overdose:

  • Know the signs of an overdose: Loss of consciousness, unresponsiveness, irregular breathing, and inability to speak are a few of the signs to look out for.

  • Carry Naloxone: Naloxone (also referred to as Narcan) is a life-saving opioid reversal medication. It commonly comes in the form of a nasal spray. Some states and cities are making it available for free. For more information on how to administer Naloxone, take the Great Plains QIN Naloxone Training.

  • Test the product: Some cities and states are making fentanyl test strips available.

  • Be prepared to call for help: If you witness someone experiencing the symptoms of an overdose/poisoning, call 911 and request emergency medical services. All 50 states and D.C. have enacted Good Samaritan laws, which typically provide immunity to those who call emergency services when experiencing or witnessing an overdose. The Great Plains QIN Naloxone Training also addresses Good Samaritan Laws in the Dakotas.

There are over 250 drug-related deaths every day. Naloxone saves lives. We each have a moral obligation to be prepared to administer naloxone in the event of an overdose. The risk of being unprepared can result in loss of life. The risk of giving naloxone when it may not be needed with an unresponsive individual is negligible. Watching this video will help you feel more comfortable with administering Naloxone in an emergency.

Naloxone is the easiest way to reverse a fentanyl overdose. Learn how to use it. 

Great Plains Quality Innovation Network developed this Naloxone training for ANYONE interested in learning more about how Naloxone can be used to save a life.

This 20-minute training provides an overview of the signs and symptoms of an opioid overdose, three different naloxone administration techniques and Good Samaritan Laws inNaloxone Training North Dakota and South Dakota.

Access the Training Today

After completing the training video, a QR code/link is provided to access a Naloxone Training knowledge check. The knowledge check consists of 5 questions. A certificate of completion will be provided once the knowledge check is submitted.