ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – The New Mexico Legislature is hosting Fentanyl Awareness Day on Wednesday, Feb. 22 in Santa Fe. The campaign is in collaboration with Bernalillo County, the City of Albuquerque, the NM Department of Health, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, and families impacted by fentanyl. In the United States, synthetic opioids are the most common drugs involved in overdose deaths, reports the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

According to the New Mexico Department of Health, fentanyl-involved overdoses have steadily increased in New Mexico. The NMDOH states that from 2016 to 2020, 2,642 New Mexicans lost their lives to unintentional overdoses. In 2020 alone, those deaths accounted for more than one-third of the overdose deaths in our state.

Vasquez emphasizes the danger of fentanyl and states that one kilogram of fentanyl is enough to kill 500,000 people. He explains that other drugs are often laced with fentanyl which, even in small doses, can become lethal.

Bernalillo Country Communications Coordinator, Estevan Vasquez, expresses that fentanyl addiction does not define a person and doesn’t want this issue to have a stigma associated with it. Vasquez says, “the people who we are talking about are often beautiful people who are living productive lives.” He encourages those suffering from addiction to step forward and get the help they need.

For more information regarding Fentanyl Awareness Day visit