R&B singer Chaka Khan has entered rehab to fight an addiction to prescription pain medication.
The 63-year-old confirmed the news to The Associated Press on Sunday, saying that she’s been battling an addiction to fentanyl, the same powerful painkiller that led to Prince’s death in April. Fentanyl is a synthetic opiate that is about 80 times more potent than morphine and hundreds of times more potent than heroin, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
“Unfortunately, I will miss concert appearances over the summer,” she told the AP in a statement. “However, it’s vital that I put my health and well-being first. I know that I am disappointing some of my fans, but I also know they would want me to recover and be well and healthy.”
A representative for Khan gave The Modesto Bee a similar explanation on Saturday, confirming the decision was voluntary.
Khan’s sister, Yvonne Stevens (aka Taka Boom) has also entered a rehabilitation and aftercare program. Both women “agreed we would take this journey together and support each other through the recovery,” Khan said.
“The tragic death of Prince has had us both rethinking and reevaluating our lives and priorities,” the “I’m Every Woman” singer told the AP. “We knew it was time to take action to save our lives. My sister and I would like to thank everyone for their support, love and prayers.”
As a result of entering the program, Khan has canceled a string of performances over the summer, one of which was scheduled to take place at the Stanislaus County Fair in Turlock, California, on Wednesday.
Adrenna Alkhas, a spokesperson for the fair, released the following statement on Saturday:
“We are extremely disappointed Chaka Khan cancelled because we knew how much the community was looking forward to it, yet at the same time we wish her the best in her health and full recovery.”
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