The West Essex First Aid Squad was trained on Tuesday to administer Naloxone (Narcan).
Narcan is a medication that is used to reverse the effects of opioids (drugs such as heroin, codeine and morphine). The training was conducted by Stephanie Niemiec, MICP and attended by WEFAS officers.
In an effort to reduce the burden associated with certain types of drug overdoses in the community, the NJ Department of Health had passed the “Overdose Prevention Act,” which grants all certified NJ EMTs the authorization to administer Narcan to any individual believed to be experiencing an opioid overdose to prevent fatalities.
This Act was necessary because the use of Narcan was not currently covered by state EMT rules and the Christie administration wanted to act quickly in the face of what has been described as an epidemic of heroin-related deaths.
According to WEFAS Capt. David Black, “WEFAS is the first agency in the area to be approved to carry and administer Narcan. While we hope to never need to use this life saving drug, we are trained and ready if needed.”