With opiate abuse at the highest rates ever, professionals have been looking for new ways to combat the issue. Most states have seen record numbers of opiate drug overdoses and it has become apparent that new measures need to be taken to counter the problem. Naloxone is a medication that has been around since the 1970's and has been used in hospitals to reverse opiate overdoses. It is on hand with most medical professionals and now with some police to prevent overdoses while they are occurring.
The drug Naloxone (Narcan) has become a hot topic in many states because many local governments are sending it out with first responders. Most police departments are arming their officers with the drug because they are usually first at the scene. The drug needs to be administered early in the overdose process and it will have the most affect on lives now that police and EMT's will have it. The drug has already saved thousands of lives and will continue to save even more as it's distributed.
The drug has had its opponents. A small percentage of citizens believe the drug will not help the problem. They believe that it will make the users feel invincible and will make them use more opiates to achieve their high. They feel it is a fail safe for them and they no longer have to fear the repercussions of their actions. In reality, Naloxone has a small window of time to be administered. The opiate users are already gambling with their lives by abusing opiates but to rely on a chance that first responders or a family member will get to you in time is insane. For anyone who is against the drug, I am curious what your take on patients who get their stomach pumped due to alcohol poisoning. Are you against that as well?
The FDA has just announced that Naloxone will be available for home use. If you live with someone or have a family member who is a known opiate addict, you will be able to obtain the medication from your doctor to have in the home in case the addict overdoses. Upon receiving the medication, please educate yourself on administration of the medicine and your plans immediately after it is administered. The drug will save many lives but it does not stop there. Make sure you call 911 immediately. If the abuser survives the overdose you will want to look into possible treatment scenarios for rehabilitation.
Naloxone is a miracle drug that will save thousands of more lives per year now that it is available for home use. It is very cheap and now easily obtained. The drug does not have any other uses than to save one from overdose so there is no chance for abuse. I think having this drug carried by our first responders and in the homes of those who have family members with known problems with opiates is a no brainer. I hope the backlash against this drug will subside and the people who are against it will educate themselves more on its use.