MEXICALI, BAJA CALIFORNIA.- Every day the Mexicali police department deals with several deaths of suspected addicts, most of whom are believed to have been unaware of exactly what they were taking, according to its deputy director Carlos Romero.
“Many are overdoses,” Romero said.
“The presence of fentanyl has grown a lot in the city,” he added.
Julio Buenrostro, who works for the Red Cross nonprofit humanitarian organization, said that overdoses represented up to 25 percent of the emergencies that the organization deals with.
Thanks to naloxone “we managed to save a lot of lives,” he said.
Without regular access to the drug, emergency workers turn to Verter, which sources naloxone from across the border.
Lopez Obrador has criticized the United States for its provision of free naloxone, arguing that it does not address the root causes of the problem.
He has floated the idea of banning fentanyl as a painkiller.
After his own brush with death, Rizo wants to warn others of the danger of taking drugs that may have been adulterated.
“I lived it firsthand,” Rizo said of his overdose in Mexicali, where he roams the streets using a walking frame with two faithful dogs following him.