Friday, June 3, 2016

Arcata Police Now Carry a Life-Saving Overdose Drug

Posted By on Fri, Jun 3, 2016 at 4:22 PM

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Arcata police have become the first in the county to carry Naloxone, a life-saving medication that counteracts opiate overdoses.

Officers have been trained by county public health officials to identify and respond to people suffering from an overdose. Equipping officers with the drug and skills to administer is a big step in an ongoing effort by multiple local agencies to address Humboldt County's staggering overdose and hospitalization rates.

From APD:

The Arcata Police Department will be the first law enforcement agency in Humboldt County to carry and administer Naloxone or better known as Narcan, which is a life-saving medication that can reverse an opiate overdose.

APD Officers received training from Public Health on how to identify and respond to an overdose using Narcan. The medication is administered by a nasal spray that is absorbed quickly and can reverse an opiate overdose in minutes. Narcan has been proven safe and has no effect on people who are not using opiates. The Humboldt County Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) provided the nasal Narcan to APD.

Recent statistics from the California Health Care Foundation indicate that Humboldt County is fourth among California counties for opiate overdose deaths and first for opiate overdose hospitalizations.

Assuring the availability of Narcan is part of the efforts of Rx Safe Humboldt to address overdose death rates. Rx Safe Humboldt brings together the Humboldt Independent Practice Association, local law enforcement, DHHS, hospitals, community members and health care providers to collaboratively work on this public health issue.

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Grant Scott-Goforth

Grant Scott-Goforth has been an assistant editor and staff writer for The Journal since 2013.

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