Hello and welcome to the History of Drugs in Society, where we explore the history of different substances and how we’ve lived alongside and interacted with them. I’m your host, Eugene Leventhal.
If you’re interested in learning more about how fentanyl markets came about and how they look like today, you should enjoy this discussion. In this episode, I interview Jon Caulkins, who is a University Professor Of Operations Research And Public Policy at Carnegie Mellon University’s Heinz College. Our interview focuses on fentanyl in the United States, looking at both the history and current state of fentanyl market. We talk about the impact of COVID-19 on fentanyl markets, what evidence there has been of fentanyl being mixed with other drugs, and what a term like morphine equivalent dose means and why it’s important to know. We also touch on safe supply, regional and international trends in synthetic opioid usage, and where data on overdoses come from.
Pulling from his bio on the Heinz College site, “Jon Caulkins has been on the Heinz College faculty since 1990, with leaves of absence to be co-director of RAND’s Drug Policy Research Center in Santa Monica (1994-1996), to found RAND’s Pittsburgh Office (1999-2001), and to teach at Carnegie Mellon’s campus in Doha, Qatar (2005-2011).
Here is the link to the UN report mention https://news.un.org/en/story/2020/05/1063512