New Statistics on Narcan Use in Connecticut - NBC Connecticut

New Statistics on Narcan Use in Connecticut

(Published Tuesday, May 24, 2016)

Connecticut has been hearing a lot about heroin and fentanyl lately; two drugs fueling a jump in overdose deaths across the state.

In 2015 there were 108 heroin and fentanyl deaths in the state compared to just one back in 2012.

Connecticut State Police see the deadly impact first hand when they're called to a scene.

According to the Department of Public Health, more than 7,111 doses of Naloxone, better known as Narcan, were given in our state from 2012 to 2014.

It's another reason why all state troopers are armed with the drug, which reverses the effects of an opioid overdose.

Trooper First Class Pietor Groot understands that minutes matter, recently, driving down the highway, he responded to an emergency call.

Groot told the NBC Connecticut Troubleshooters, “A couple months ago, on I-91, off duty at the time, I got called. It was an unconscious party on the side of the road, when I got on the scene, quickly determined they had used an opiate, and the Narcan would be appropriate."

Groot and every other member of the state police are all trained to administer Narcan-- the overdose-reversing drug given by syringe or intra-nasally.

In the end, it saved the 30-something man's life. Within three minutes, the individual regained consciousness.

Since October 2014, when troopers started using Narcan, they've responded to 94 calls for help involving suspected heroin and opioid overdoses.

Of that 94, 86 victims were revived/survived. Eight did not make it.

"Fentanyl laced heroin is very prevalent in state and numbers are increasing every year, so (there's a) definite need for it," stated Trooper First Class Rob Lanouette.

Lanouette trains troopers on how to use the Narcan. Each trooper is issued a three piece kit, including the medication, deployed through this atomizer.

“Going to take the atomizer and stick it into the right or left nose, or nostril and gunna direct it toward the ear on that side and we're gunna give a quick burst of half, which is one milligram and then we're gunna put it in the other nostril, give the other half and generally it takes three to five minutes for the Narcan to kick in,” said Lanouette.

At least 80 pharmacies in Connecticut have pharmacists who have completed a two-hour course to prescribe Narcan to patients and Connecticut caregivers. You can walk in to those pharmacies and get a script for if/when you need it.

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