BINGHAMTON (WBNG) — With the state of emergency declaration Wednesday due to the recent rise of overdoses, the Broome County Health Department is working with other officials to do what they can to combat this drug emergency. One part of that is receiving 200 NARCAN kits from the state.
“New York State Oasis has sent 200 new NARCAN kits to Broome County as of this morning. We will be working with our community partners to get those out as quickly as possible to the community,” said Rebecca Kaufman, Director of Public Health for Broome County.
These kits are very important because they not only contain the drug itself, but also the tools necessary for first responders and others to stay safe while treating someone who is overdosing.
“In the NARCAN kits that we’re distributing there are a set of gloves as well as a mask to do respiratory breathing for someone who is not breathing,” said Kaufman.
These kits will be available at the health department for those who need them. NARCAN itself can also be picked up at any local pharmacy, even without a prescription.’
“Naloxone, or NARCAN, can be gotten at most pharmacies with a standing order. Which means you don’t have to have a prescription from the doctor, you can just stop in and ask for it,” said Karen Conn, Supervising Pharmacist at The Medicine Shoppe.
Through a program called N-CAP, people can get their insurance to cover the initial cost of NARCAN, with the state then covering any co-pay up to $40 Programs like these make health officials and pharmacists hopeful this ends the stigma of carrying NARCAN to save those you love and combats the emergency.
“I hope people don’t find that they have a stigma attached to it. That’s why I was kind of saying that everyone should carry it. It’s the kind of thing, it can happen to anyone,” said Conn.
Another thing stressed by health officials is that NARCAN doesn’t do harm to those who are not overdosing to begin with. So, if you think someone is having an overdose, it’s safer to use NARCAN than not.