New Philadelphia, Ohio - City public health officials are working to get more of the opioid overdose reversal drug naloxone out into the community.
New Philadelphia Health Commissioner Vickie Ionno says the city health department was recently awarded a grant from the makers of EVZIO to purchase 200 of their injectable naloxone kits.
“This is injected rather than sprayed up the nostril as the others are, and it’s all self-contained. It’s all pre-loaded, and it has a retractable needle, and it can be injected through the clothing,” she says.
Ionno says they applied for the grant about a month ago and were notified last week that their application had been accepted. She says the kits arrived at their office last Friday, and they’re now working to get them into the hands of community members and first responders.
“We plan on getting them into as many hands as we can. I’ve already distributed quite a few to our New Philadelphia Police Department so they can carry them in their cruisers. Also, I’m giving some to the Southern District Court probation, also our local probation. I’m talking to ADAMHS Board and the Quick Response Team,” she says. “We just want to get them out to as many agencies that work with people who are at risk of an overdose or to an individual who may have a loved one who is at risk.”
Ionno says each kit contains two individual doses of injectable naloxone and a “trainer” that talks users through how to administer the medication.
“In each box, in each kit, they call it, there’s two separate doses of the naloxone and also a trainer, which is the same size but it clearly says trainer on it and you can pull off the tab and it talks, tells you what to do,” she explains.
Ionno says the health department is offering the kits free of charge but the supply is limited. She says people can contact her for more information. Ionno can be reached by calling 330-364-4491, ext. 1208.
“We don’t want them to sit on the shelf. We want to get them out. You never know when someone may be in an overdose situation, and we want them to be in the hands of people who may be able to be there and use them,” Ionno says.
STACEY CARMANY, TUSCO TV