Community-based organization makes big impact with Naloxone
A North Carolina group focused on harm reduction has just reported it’s 10,000th life saved by Naloxone. What’s even more impressive about this number is that it does not include lives saved by EMT workers.
As reported by NCHRC, since August 1, 2013, NCHRC has distributed overdose prevention kits containing naloxone, a medicine that reverses drug overdose from most prescription pain relievers and illicit opiates, to people at risk for drug overdose and their loved ones all over the state. Naloxone is a safe, effective medication that temporarily blocks the effects of opiate pain relievers in the brain long enough to restore breathing in a person experiencing respiratory failure from a drug overdose.
“Thanks to this program, an enormous number of families do not have to grieve the loss of a loved one,” says Dr. James “Tripp” Winslow, Medical Director for the North Carolina Office of EMS. “I look forward to continued partnerships with organizations across the state to offer people who struggle with addiction a second chance at life.”
Louise Vincent, who lost her 19-year-old daughter, Selena, to an overdose in 2016, currently runs a program in Greensboro where she empowers former and active drug users to be part of the solution to the overdose crisis. “Naloxone access and strong harm reduction programs are all important ingredients to reducing overdose deaths, but the most important thing we can do is to make sure we are including former and active drug users in all aspects of planning, and implementing new programs and policies,” she says. “I watch every day as task forces and overdose summits are planned and carried out with not one active user anywhere in sight. If you are working on reducing overdose death look around, do you have the people who are most affected at your table?”
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To read more about the impressive results by one organization in North Carolina, please visit NCHRC.org.