Pennsylvania House Moves to Legalize Fentanyl Test Strips

Drug overdose deaths have risen sharply in Pennsylvania in recent years, and the General Assembly is taking harm-reduction efforts more seriously than in the past. Last week, the House unanimously passed a bill, HB1393, that would legalize fentanyl test strips for personal use so drug users could know the purity of their substances. The strips are currently classified as drug paraphernalia and illegal. Pennsylvania is third in the nation for overdose drug deaths, with 5,360 people dying in 2021. A report from the attorney general’s office blames the increase in overdose death rates on fentanyl displacing heroin in the commonwealth’s drug supply. The report called for legalizing test strips as well as more treatment programs. The bill awaits further action in the Senate.