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April 21, 2016 8:25 pm
Health Canada moving quickly to regulate dangerous opioid drug W-18
By John Cotter The Canadian Press
<img class="story-img" src="https://shawglobalnews.files.wordpress.com/2016/04/cpt112335851_high.jpg... alt="Fentanyl pills are shown in an undated police handout photo. Police and Alberta health officials are raising the alarm about a dangerous drug called W-18 that is much more toxic than fentanyl, another opioid that has been linked to hundreds of deaths in Canada. " />;
Fentanyl pills are shown in an undated police handout photo. Police and Alberta health officials are raising the alarm about a dangerous drug called W-18 that is much more toxic than fentanyl, another opioid that has been linked to hundreds of deaths in Canada.
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EDMONTON – Health Canada says it is moving quickly to include the dangerous synthetic opioid W-18 under the federal Controlled Drug and Substances Act but maintains the drug is already illegal under another law.
The department says it considers W-18, which police say is 100 times more powerful and toxic than fentanyl, to be a new psychoactive substance after testing two samples from Alberta.
The Alberta government has been urging Ottawa to take action after police in Edmonton seized four kilograms of W-18 in December.
Police have said there was enough of the white powdery drug to make millions of pills and Alberta officials sent out a warning to front-line health staff to watch for a possible increase in overdoses.
READ MORE: ‘It is a huge issue’: 145 fentanyl-related deaths in Alberta so far in 2015
There were 272 fentanyl-related deaths in Alberta last year and health officials in the province consider W-18 to be more dangerous.
Health Canada says it is moving to treat W-18 as a Schedule 1 drug, which would make its unauthorized use illegal under the Act.
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Deadly W-18 powder seized during Edmonton fentanyl drug bust
Alberta NDP may support private member’s bill to restrict pill machines

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