Fentanyl Test Strips & Naloxone

Help Prevent Overdose! 

Use Fentanyl Test Strips (FTS) to test pills and powder substances for fentanyl contamination. Use Naloxone/Narcan to reverse a possible opioid/fentanyl overdose.

What is Fentanyl?

Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that is 50 times more potent than heroin. Fentanyl can be cut into substances including cocaine, MDMA, heroin, amphetamines, and counterfeit pills (Xanax, Adderall, etc.).

Why test your drugs for Fentanyl?

Substances obtained outside of the pharmacy have no guarantee of their contents. In recent drug confiscations, the DEA found that 42% of pills tested for fentanyl contained at least 2mg, a potentially lethal dose. Additionally, mixing Fentanyl with other drugs such as cocaine or sedatives can increase its risk. For example, sedatives such as Xanax can compound the "downer" effect of fentanyl while uppers such as cocaine can conflict with fentanyl's effect, leading to too much strain on multiple body systems. Testing for Fentanyl is a simple and fast preventative measure that can considerably decrease risk.

Free Fentanyl Test Strips and Naloxone

Free Fentanyl Test Strips

Locations On Campus (Spring 2024) 

Locations and times are listed below. Limit of 3 per person.

Off-Campus Locations

  • Use the Friends of Fentcheck map to find locations that distribute free FTS near campus.  
  • In residential spaces for CalGreeks, Berkeley Student Co-ops, Cal Athletics, and ResLife

Free Naloxone

You can pick up a naloxone kit at the following times and locations. 

On-Campus Locations (Spring 2024)

  • Monday-Friday: 9am-5 pm, 102 Sproul Hall 
  • Monday-Friday: UHS Pharmacy, during open hours
  • Monday-Friday: 10am-4pm, UHS Health Promotion Dept. (2nd Floor)
  • Tuesday: 1-3 pm, Sproul Plaza 

Select campus residential spaces including CalGreeks, Berkeley Student Co-Ops, Cal Athletics, and ResLife have emergency Naloxone kits. Unlike the campus Naloxone distribution sites listed above, these emergency units are not for individual pick up. These supplies are to be kept on site to be used in the case of emergency. If you are interested in details or requesting supplies for your campus residential organization, please contact our team at partysafe@berkeley.edu or recoveryatcal@berkeley.edu and to request a restock please complete our form.

What should you know about using fentanyl test strips?

The chocolate chip cookie effect

Fentanyl is often distributed unevenly in the bag (aka “the chocolate chip cookie effect”). A best practice is to test everything you plan on consuming, but test at least 10mg (the size of a grain of rice) every time you use from the bag. Vigorously shake the bag before testing to spread around any possible contaminants.

For pills or substances, you intend to consume orally, crush the entire sample, dissolve in the appropriate amount of water, and test it.

Test strips are always subject to user error in the dilution or interpretation of results. Without sending your sample to a lab there is no 100% guarantee of the safety of your substance. So stay safer - never use alone, start off slow, don't mix unknowns, and have naloxone!

These strips only test for fentanyl and its analogs (similar chemicals derived from fentanyl). There are many other substances you may not want to consume! If you want to know exactly what’s in a drug, try a full reagent kit or send it to pill reports.

Follow the drug-checking steps exactly

To reduce the margin of error, it is important to use these strips properly. For more detailed instructions, check out this guide.

REMEMBER: A negative result is not a 100% guarantee that your substance is free from synthetic opioids!

The effective dilution rate varies by drug

  • Fentanyl test strips are capable of detecting 20 ng/ml of fentanyl, but this changes for analogs. To be safer, a more concentrated solution is always recommended.
  • The most effective dilution rate for most drugs is 10mg/ml (50mg for every 5ml or 1 tsp of water).
  • Methamphetamine and MDMA need to be diluted more than other drugs because they can produce false positives if they are too concentrated.
  • Meth and MDMA need to be diluted down to 2mg/ml (10mg for every 5 ml or 1 tsp of water). 

To Increase accuracy, weigh your drugs and use the measuring spoons you would use for baking.

  • 1 US teaspoon is almost exactly 5 ml
  • 1 US tablespoon is three teaspoons (15 ml)

If you don’t have proper measuring spoons, a standard plastic bottle cap is a bit larger than a teaspoon. If you don't have a scale, 10mg is around the size of a grain of rice.

What about pressed pills?

  • Crush the entire pill into a fine powder
  • Place powder in a cup
  • Dissolve the powder in 1-2 tablespoons (around half a shot glass) of water
  • Proceed with step 2 of the instructions

What should you know about using Naloxone?

What is Naloxone?

Naloxone is a medication that works almost immediately to reverse opiate overdose. It has few known adverse effects, no potential for abuse, and can be rapidly administered through intramuscular injection or nasal spray. While most professional first responders and emergency departments, including UCPD, are equipped with naloxone, they may not arrive in time to revive overdose victims. Educated and equipped bystanders can effectively take steps to reverse an opioid overdose.

Why Should You Carry Naloxone?

Given the success of naloxone bystander programs, the CDC and the World Health Organization have recommended expanding the availability of naloxone to laypeople.

The amount of time it takes for first responders to arrive on the scene can mean a person's life in the case of an opioid overdose. Carrying naloxone allows civilians to become responsible bystanders and potentially save a life in the event of encountering an opioid overdose.

How Does Naloxone Work?

When administered during an overdose, naloxone blocks the effect of opioids on the brain and restores breathing within two to eight minutes to prevent death.

How Do You Administer Naloxone?

Signs of possible opioid overdose:

  • The person can’t be woken up
  • Breathing is slow or has stopped
  • Snoring or gurgling sounds
  • Fingernails and lips turn blue or purple
  • Pupils are tiny or eyes are rolled back
  • Body is limp

What to do:

  • Shout their name & shake their shoulders
  • Call 911 if unresponsive
  • Give naloxone - one spray into the nostril
  • Perform rescue breathing and/or chest compressions
  • If no improvement after 2-3 minutes, repeat steps 3 & 4. Stay with them.

After Administering Naloxone

Naloxone often works immediately. But depending on the individual's size and use history, they may need more than 1 or 2 applications. If the person does not recover quickly you may need to perform other life-saving strategies such as Hands-Only CPR and rescue breathing. Naloxone’s effect lasts for about 30 to 90 minutes in the body. If the naloxone wears off before the effects of the opioids wear off, the person might go into an overdose again. For this reason, it is always very important to call emergency medical assistance even before administering naloxone!

After you administer naloxone, do not leave the individual unattended until you can transfer their care to a medical professional.

Can I get in trouble if I call 911 on someone’s behalf if I’m also using substances?

California has a 911 Good Samaritan Law (California Health and Safety Code Section 11376.5) protects you from arrest, charge, and prosecution when you call 911 at the scene of a suspected drug overdose. Nobody at the scene should be charged for personal amounts of drugs or paraphernalia. This law does not protect you if:

  • You are on parole/probation; it is likely still a violation
  • You have more drugs than “possession for personal use”; it is still illegal to have any amount that would suggest trafficking or sales
  • You “obstruct medical or law enforcement personnel”; it is still important to not intervene with the activities of police or emergency personnel.

UC Berkeley has a Responsible Bystander Policy to encourage students to seek medical assistance for peers in need and prioritize student safety across campus. A student or registered student group (RSO) promptly seeking necessary medical assistance on behalf of a student experiencing an alcohol or controlled substance emergency will be exempt from the form Student Conduct processes concerning alcohol and controlled substances (102.17 and 102.18) 

About + Get Involved


The Harm Reduction Expansion Project seeks to expand existing harm reduction information, training, and resources to address risks of potential fentanyl contamination. 

We provide the following for students, staff, faculty, and student groups:

  • Low to no-cost fentanyl test strips
  • Naloxone/Narcan
  • Harm reduction & recovery awareness education and training resources
  • Leadership to reduce stigma related to substance use in our campus community, which interferes with our capacity to help ourselves and each other

This project is co-sponsored by The Collegiate Recovery Program and PartySafe and is supported by grant funding from the Berkeley Wellness Fund. Free naloxone is available to UHS PartySafe at Cal and the Collegiate Recovery Program through the CDPH Naloxone Distribution Project.

Get Involved

  • VolunteeringSubmit this Volunteer Form to let us know your interests. We will follow up within 72 hours. 
  • For on-campus organizationsIf you are the PRESIDENT, RISK MANAGER, and/or SIGNATORY for a campus affiliated and/or registered student organization and are interested in acquiring Fentanyl Test Strips and Naloxone for your organization, please read and complete this Interest Form.
  • Provide feedbackPlease fill out the HREP FTS Feedback Survey to help us improve and guide future pick-up locations on campus.
  • Learn more - Please email partysafe@berkeley.edu for more information.



On Campus

Online/Off Campus

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