Narcan is the brand name for the drug Naloxone. For years this drug has been used by paramedics and hospital workers to reverse the impact of opiate overdoses. In layman terms, the drug quickly flushes opiates from the addict’s system.
Check out: The U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder on the subject of Naloxone
The down side is it throws them into severe withdrawal. The upside is it saves their lives.
Related: Philip Seymour Hoffman’s overdose and Narcan Some facts about Naloxone:
- Individual states continue to introduce laws that allow non-medical people to get trained in how to administer Naloxone and carry it with them for the purpose of reversing opiate overdoses.
- In most cases, the only requirement is that you are an addict or someone you know is an addict and therefore at risk of death by opiate overdose in the future.
- There are two delivery methods. You can squirt it up the nostrils of the overdosed person or you can use the kind that is given as a shot to the upper arm. It does not go into a vein but is used like an insulin shot.
- The effects of Naloxone last between 30 and 90 minutes. This gives you enough to time to seek medical care for the addict.
- The worst-case scenario is that the addict is thrown into withdrawal unnecessarily. This is good news for those who make the decision to administer the drug. They can err on the side of caution and administer it if there is any question at all that the addict may have overdosed.
- New Mexico was the first state to allow access to the drug by non-medical persons and they provided immunity to those who administer the drug.
- Naloxone is provided by a “third party prescription,” which means the doctor can write an open prescription that allows social workers, addiction centers and others to distribute the drug and train people how to use it..
Find out if your state allows non-medical people to carry Narcan.
- Death by overdose has increased more than 100 percent in the past decade and 75 percent of those deaths were opiate related.