Ambulance drugs tampered with

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CALGARY — Safeguards are being stepped up in Calgary ambulances after vials of a powerful narcotic were tampered with.

An EMS memo to paramedics says bottles of Fentanyl have been found with puncture holes through their protective plastic caps.

The vials have been found on a number of ambulances in the city.

The memo suggests medics should check all cover caps, hand off drugs to each other between shifts and keep track of supplies in a book.

Shannon Evans, a spokeswoman for Alberta Health Services, confirms an internal investigation is underway.

Fentanyl is a narcotic often used for pain relief and said to be 100 times more potent than morphine.

“Immediate actions have been taken to minimize risk of further tampering,” Evans said Tuesday. “To the best of our knowledge, patient care has not been compromised.”

The memo from Dave Milne, supervisor of Calgary metro operations, said the tampered vials were in drug pouches and could “pose a significant risk to any EMS patient.”

Evans said police are not involved in the investigation at this point. She did not comment on the possibility the tampering could be an inside job.


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