August 27, 2014

Elyria
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Elyria police officers now carrying antidote for heroin overdoses

ELYRIA — Narcan, the brand name of the antidote for people overdosing on heroin and prescription pills, will be placed in every Elyria police cruiser and fire truck by the end of the month as city employees are being trained on how to administer the drug.

Bruce Shade, the city’s assistant safety service director, said Elyria safety forces will be part of a pilot program the state legislature approved and Gov. John Kasich signed into law. The program, which runs for one year and will be exclusive to Lorain County, is designed to test the effectiveness of having first responders administer the drug in hopes of reversing deadly overdoses.

Narcan is the brand name for naloxone, a synthetic narcotic that blocks the effects of opiates like heroin, on the nervous system. Narcan comes in a nasal spray and can be administered by officers who arrive first on the scene of drug overdoses.

Lorain County Coroner Stephen Evans, also a member of a group called LorainCountyDAWN — Deaths Avoided With Naloxone — is a big proponent of police officers and firefighters being equipped with the drug as the number of fatal overdoses in the city continues to climb.

Shade said officers and firefighters will begin training how to administer the drug and will be ready when it placed in cruisers by the end of the month.

Elyria will follow the training program established by the Lorain Police Department, Shade said.

Contact Lisa Roberson at 329-7121 or lroberson@chroniclet.com. Follow her on Twitter @LisaRobersonCT.

  • taxpayer89

    Why? Let those losers die on heroine if they want. They are just going back to using anyway. They are wasting those officer’s time and tax payers money!!!

  • Jorge Wilson

    ;They’re (the overdosing individual) are going to get the Narcan anyway.. either by the police/fire or EMS (when they get called for an OD). You might as well have the police administer it if they first respond, right?

  • Jennifer Williams

    wow taxpayer89 a bit rude and inconsiderate you think? I must add that my brother od’d about 5 years ago and has been clean since he actually runs a sobriety house in Elyria as well. Not all go back to using true some do or can but your statement believes all do. Which is BS. I hope to think some will try to get a 2nd chance of life without going back.

  • Patrick Mudge

    My question is why would a police officer administer nasal NARCAN on a patient that has had an overdose? The nasal form of administration risks aspirating the airway in lieu of a Paranedic administering the medication via intra venous. If the pt is unconscious then the police are going to spray a chemical in the airway that could complicate the recovery process further by making oxygen exchange even harder. Additionally, most patients to have habitual heroine abuse may experience an acute withdrawal (cardiac arrest) after being given the nasal NARCAN and the police officer doesn’t have the abilities to stop that complication. A paramedic with cardiac drugs can recover that person given that circumstance. It seems to me that we can all agree the theory is sound and prematurely affective while appealing to the public. But I would like to know what other EMS employees think about this.

    I hope I’m wrong.

    • Bill

      The police in a lot of cases are the first to arrive with fire/paramedics right on their heels but with time being of essence It makes sense for the police to administer this and any complications if any can be taken care of by the paramedics.

      • Patrick Mudge

        I see your point Bill. This may work well in city environments where response time between police and fire is less than 2 minutes (critical cardiac resusc time). But what if the more rural communities with volunteer ems and fire can’t make that 2 min window? The only option to reduce those response times at to spend a lot more money in some fashion. I’m not saying this is a bad idea but how far will it go?

        • Bill

          I would think in those situations it’s do or die. If not given the treatment they could very well die anyhow waiting for the paramedics. Time will tell.

  • Phil Blank

    Is it a single does spray, or is it shared by many, passing along other diseases in doing so?

    Its also an injectable.

    It works by neutralizing the opioids in your system and helping you breathe again. Naloxone only works if a person has opioids in their system; the medication doesn’t work on other drugs. You can’t get high from it and it is safe for nearly everyone. (But there are side effects) look it up!

    Naloxone, an opioid antagonist, is a synthetic congener of oxymorphone. It differs from oxymorphone in that the methyl group on the nitrogen atom is replaced by an allyl group.

    Naloxone Hydrochloride, USP is chemically designated 17-Allyl-4,5α-epoxy-3,14-dihydroxymorphinan-6-one hydrochloride (C19H21NO4 • HCl), a white to slightly off-white powder soluble in water, in dilute acids, and in strong alkali; slightly soluble in alcohol; practically insoluble in ether and chloroform. It has a molecular weight of 363.84. It has the following structural formula:

  • SpaceTech

    I don’t think it should be the responsibility of Police officers to try and determine the status of anybody other than drunk drivers. The Police have enough to worry about
    without having to try and diagnose the health staus of habitual drug offenders.
    Next the city will want police officers to add water tanks to their patrol cars and extinguish fires when they come upon them.

  • Mark B

    I wonder who is paying for this. oh wait it will be the taxpayer of course. Who is going to pay for the Liability insurance? are heroin addicts now going to be sueing the Police for malpractice ? Mark my words this is not going to end well

    • Bill

      The Ohio Department of Health is funding this program. So yes you and I are funding this program.

  • Gun toting cracker

    Liberals, how’s that ban on Heroin working out for you? Maybe you could restrict syringes to, what say, 2 cc?? That way they (addicts) would have to reload twice as often in order to kill them self’s.