Asotin Police & Deputies Start Carrying Medication to Reverse Narcotic Overdoses
ASOTIN, WA - As a matter of public safety, two local law enforcement agencies today announced that their personnel are now carrying medication to reverse narcotic overdoses, such as from heroin or other drugs. The Asotin Police Department and the Asotin County Sheriff’s Office have implemented policies to allow Officers and Deputies to carry the medication following a process to update policy, perform training, and become equipped with it.
"The first step was to institute a policy for the use of the medication. With guidance from insurance carriers, attorneys, local medical first responders, and Dr. Mountjoy, a policy was implemented to allow officers to have this option. In the State of Washington, this type of medication requires a doctor’s prescription, which Dr. Mountjoy will provide. Officers and Deputies then went through training to recognize the signs of an overdose and when and how to use the medication. The training also covered how to treat subjects after administering the medication. Paramedic Jerid Hilderbrand from the Pullman Fire Department provided the training for both departments," APD Chief Monte Renzelman says in a press release.
Renzelman says the decision to use the overdose medication comes from an increase in the number of opioid overdose cases throughout the region and state.
"The safety of individuals overdosing and the safety of the public were looked into very closely. Similar to AEDs, this gives officers another tool to assist in possibly saving a life," Renzelman
Meanwhile, Clarkston Police are still in the process of assessing the use of Narcan.
"As part of the process we have met with local EMS and police agencies who are currently using the medication for input. Clarkston Fire Units carry Narcan and Chief Cooper has been helpful in providing information to us as well," according to CPD Chief Joel Hastings.
More information on Naloxone/Narcan: http://harmreduction.org/issues/overdose-prevention/overview/overdose-basics/understanding-naloxone/
(Graphics: Maya Doe-Simkins/Harm Reduction Coalition).