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Addiction recovery group says newly-legalized fentanyl testing strips will save lives

Tara Hyde, the CEO of People Advocating Recovery, said a new law decriminalizing fentanyl test strips will save lives.
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People Advocating Recovery
Tara Hyde, the CEO of People Advocating Recovery, said a new law decriminalizing fentanyl test strips will save lives.

The CEO of a group that successfully pushed to decriminalize fentanyl test strips said House Bill 353, which Governor Beshear signed into law, will save lives. Tara Hyde of People Advocating Recovery said the debate over harm reduction efforts like allowing drug users to test for fentanyl is settled.

“And that's because we have been losing people left and right. You know, last year alone, we've lost over 2,500 Kentuckians to an accidental overdose.”

According to the state Office of Drug Control Policy, the most recent statistics show about 70 percent of Kentucky drug overdose deaths involved fentanyl. Hyde said the best argument for the HB 353 is a simple one.

“We want to keep people alive long enough, so that way, one day, they can find recovery, they can find treatment, they can access services. If people aren't alive, they will not recover.”

Hyde said harm reduction efforts, like needle exchange programs, may at first be controversial –but they do save lives.

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John McGary is a Lexington native and Navy veteran with three decades of radio, television and newspaper experience.
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