The nasal spray is used on victims who have overdosed on the drug. After the victim recovers, they are given a medical evaluation.
Kits containing Narcan, the aerosol form of the drug Naloxone, has been distributed to 30 municipal police departments as well as the Burlington County Sheriff’s Department. More than 60 officers were trained to administer the antidote.The other departments that will carry the antidote include
Bordentown City, Bordentown Township, Burlington City, Chesterfield, Delanco, Delran, Eastampton, Edgewater Park, Evesham, Fieldsboro, Florence, Lumberton, Mansfield, Maple Shade, Medford Lakes, Medford Township, Moorestown, Mount Holly, Mount Laurel, New Hanover, North Hanover, Palmyra, Pemberton Borough, Pemberton Township, Riverside, Riverton, Springfield, Westampton and Willingboro.
“This is a very powerful tool that has already shown to be very effective in other counties,” Burlington County Prosecutor Robert D. Bernardi said. “Narcan offers a second chance. We can only hope that those who are saved through this initiative realize how close they came to dying and use that as motivation to battle their addiction in an attempt to lead a drug-free life.”Last year, legislators passed the Opioid Antidote and Overdose Prevention Act, which made it legal for law enforcement officials to carry Naloxone/Narcan, a heroin antidote previously only available to hospital staff. It was previously only available to nurses and medical staff.
The act doesn't limit possession and administration of the antidote to police officers. It provides immunity for witnesses and drug overdose victims, and allows both healthcare professionals or pharmacists and non-healthcare professionals to dispense the antidote in emergency situations.
The average amount of time it would take a hospital employee to administer the antidote is 15 minutes, while police can administer within two to four minutes and family and friends who possess the antidote can administer it immediately
Initially, law enforcement agencies in Monmouth and Ocean counties began carrying the inhalant form of Narcan, the brand name of Naloxon.
It is also in use in Cape May County, and has been used to save lives in Camden County.
Last month, Gov. Chris Christie announced law enforcement agencies in all 21 counties will receive training on how to administer the antidote.