App warns users when drugs are laced with fentanyl

Bad Batch Alert is an anonymous texting service that uses data to track fentanyl overdose hotspots and points users in the direction of harm reduction services

By EMS1 Staff

BALTIMORE CITY, Md.  — A video game programmer and his wife created an app to help prevent heroin overdoses.

VICE reported that Mike LeGrand, who co-founded the nonprofit Code in the Schools with his wife, was inspired to create the app Bad Batch Alert after losing a friend to a fentanyl overdose.

LeGrand said he got a grant from the city’s health department and built the app, which is an anonymous texting service that tracks fentanyl overdose hotspot locations using EMS data. The app detects spikes in overdoses and alerts users if their area is seeing a high count.

The app also tells users where to find pre-existing harm reduction services, such as needle exchanges run by the city.

“We at the Baltimore City Health Department realize that we can’t solve all these issues by ourselves and that we need the collaboration of nonprofits and the private sector,” Baltimore City Health Commissioner Dr. Leana Wen said. “We strongly believe that education is critical and that we need to make information available to everyone."

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