Controversial Heroin Overdose Medication - My9 New Jersey

Controversial Heroin Overdose Medication

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Ocean County, New Jersey (My9NJ) - Ocean County is one of the first places in New Jersey to have their police department certified to carry the heroin antidote, Narcan, with them at all times.

Heroin and heroin overdoses have become a prolific problem in New Jersey, especially in Ocean County and Al Della Fave with the Ocean County Prosecutors Office discussed how this life-saving tool works.

“It’s so easy it’s a matter of taking the atomizer out, popping in the little cartridge and then spraying, just push the plunger” he explained.

Narcan blocks the effects of opioid drugs such as heroin, oxycodone and methadone. The drug comes in a box similar to a first-aid kit and looks just like an inhaler. Narcan can help revive someone who has already started turning blue.

“It gets them back breathing, but you got to get them to the hospital quick as can be so that the trained folks at the hospital do what they need to do,” Della Fave said.

Elizabeth Thompson with the Drug Policy Alliance is fighting to expand the use of Narcan which has been around for 20 years. She is a lawyer now, but not long ago she was a heroin addict herself and even experienced what it’s like to encounter a drug overdose.

“I was with my boyfriend, we were in my apartment, he was in the bath, he heard me gasping for breath. He came out of the bath, slapped me, shook me, tried to throw me in the bath to wake me up,” she recalls.

Thompson said that if Narcan was available for her, then her boyfriend and family wouldn’t have had to live in fear of her possibly dying from the overdose.

Many argue that this may help save someone’s life after the fact, but the real solution would be preventing someone from using heroin in the first place.


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