A new trend has people looking to get high on prescription pills getting something even more dangerous and addictive than they thought they were buying.
According to officials, drug users have been unintentionally buying heroin in pill form, disguised as prescription medication such as oxycontin or percocet, reports WAVE. The pills are reportedly hard to tell from the real thing.
“We’ll be seeing this pretty soon and again it’s the demand,” Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller said, adding that the pills are “a lot easier to manufacture” than regular heroin because they are "essentially chemically made.”
Officials say the pills have made their way to Florida, New Jersey and Massachusetts. The drug has also made its way to Boone County, Kentucky, where a man is believed to have overdosed after taking the pills, reports WXIX.
“It’s easier to hide as a pill form,” Indiana's Clark County Sheriff Jamey Noel told WAVE. “But the thing of it is, it’s no different than injecting it.”
In Jefferson, Indiana, a forum was held on Jan. 25 in which members of the community discussed heroin’s prominence in the area.
“It just sneaks in like a thief in the night, and you just don’t even know,” said Malinda Mackenzie, whose three children have become addicted to the drug. “This drug has taken everything from me.”
Mackenzie said her children made their way to heroin after becoming addicted to prescription pills.
“It’s on its way and we have to keep talking about it. We have to,” Mackenzie said.
Attorney General Zoeller says he worries the pill form of heroin will only make it easier for people to get on the drug.
“All of them would rather have a pill and that’s why they’re starting to see these creep into some of the markets,” he said.
Noel said the pills can vary in potency and that sometimes a single pill can kill a person.
Clark County is continuing to hold the forum on heroin until Jan. 31, hoping the community can begin to come up with solutions for the drug problem.