The Minnesota Board of Pharmacy has voted to make many fentanyl analog drugs and synthetic cannabinoids illegal to have or sell.
The board’s order temporarily classifies these drugs as Schedule I narcotics for up to 12 months. The classification means the drugs have a high potential for abuse and no accepted medical use in the United States, and they are illegal to possess or sell.
The board will work to make the classification of these substances permanent.
Fentanyl analogs are man-made chemicals related to fentanyl. Sometimes they are more potent than fentanyl and there have been warnings that they could lead to overdoses. The board says deaths from synthetic opioids have been steadily increasing in Minnesota, with 99 reported deaths in 2016.
Synthetic cannabinoids are man-made chemicals similar to the natural chemicals in marijuana.