Opiate antidote proves useful as abuse increases

2 years 1 month 1 week ago Wednesday, September 07 2016 Sep 7, 2016 Wednesday, September 07, 2016 3:10:00 PM CDT September 07, 2016 in News
By: Meg Hilling, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - Almost one year in, the Boone County Fire Protection District said it is seeing positive results from carrying opiate overdose antidotes on its trucks.

The fire department has been carrying the opiate-related overdose reversal drug, best known as Narcan, on all of its trucks since November 2015.

According to BCFPD Assistant Chief Gale Blomenkamp, the department has administered the drug on three occasions since. Two of those events have taken place in the last two months.

"One of them was a gentlemen that was in a vehicle actually at a gas station, and was overdosing on an opiate- based drug, and so we were able to give the drug and, in fact, he was alert, conscious, oriented, talking to us," Blomenkamp said.

He said the department has no regrets about the decision to carry the drug.

"We felt, as a service to our customers, that we had to start carrying this drug, because you look at 10, 15, 20 minute response times for some ambulances in our district," he said.

The Columbia Police Department said it is not carrying the drug. The Boone County Sheriff's Department did not respond to a request for information from KOMU 8 News.

In January of 2016, the CDC released a report saying, since 2000, the rate of deaths from drug overdoses has increased 137 percent , including a 200 percent increase in the rate of overdose deaths involving opioid pain relievers and heroin.

According to Heather Harlan, a prevention and treatment specialist at Phoenix Health Programs, the spike is becoming more visible in mid-Missouri.

"What has been termed an epidemic is happening with opiate addiction in our community and the country," Harlan said.

Since the beginning of 2016, she said, she has seen a large influx of clients coming to Phoenix Health Programs with opiate addiction struggles.

"Across the board, young, old, rich, poor, very successful professional people that are prominent in the community, and people who are homeless" she said.

Given the the increase, Harlan said she would like to see the community take a more active stance, as the fire department has, when it comes to battling the addiction issue.

"It is a matter of concern, I think, to those who are in health care professions that people probably wouldn't hesitate to carry insulin if someone had a diabetic reaction, to know what to do to save a life, but we might be hesitant to do that for opiate, for someone who had an opiate overdose," Harlan said.

The antidote, which is administered through the nose, costs around $50 per dose, which means the fire department spends anywhere between $4,000 to $5,000 dollars every two years to stock the drug.

Despite the price, Blomenkamp said it's worth it.

"You save one life, it's worth it," he said.

 

More News

Grid
List
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A restored St. Louis prairie of native grasses and flowers is in bloom, but the nature... More >>
1 hour ago Saturday, October 20 2018 Oct 20, 2018 Saturday, October 20, 2018 8:50:24 AM CDT October 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Sen. Claire McCaskill spoke about health care in Columbia on Friday at Laborers Local 955, as part of... More >>
14 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 7:35:00 PM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - After realizing the underrepresentation of Hispanic business owners in mid-Missouri, three Hispanic professionals established a group of 12... More >>
16 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 5:49:00 PM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - This is the last week of the regular season and it's a cold one. Our game of... More >>
16 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 5:20:00 PM CDT October 19, 2018 in Friday Night Fever
COLUMBIA - Two Midwest companies issued separate food recalls this week for bacterial contamination concerns. Hy-Vee said its supplier,... More >>
17 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 4:53:00 PM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
CAMDEN (AP) — Toxicology tests show that a boater was drunk when he slammed into a bluff at Missouri's Lake... More >>
18 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 3:41:35 PM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The Legion of Black Collegians and the FourFront Marginalized Student Council held a solidarity walk Friday to show... More >>
18 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 3:39:00 PM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The Missouri State Medical Association (MSMA), along with multiple medical associations, reaffirmed their opposition to the three... More >>
19 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 2:50:00 PM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - For the fourth consecutive year, Project Homeless Connect provided services Friday for people who are experiencing homelessness... More >>
19 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 2:39:00 PM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Mega Millions jackpot has soared to an estimated $1 billion, as the second-largest lottery... More >>
22 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 12:10:00 PM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Police want the public's help finding a man who allegedly ran from a traffic stop after hurting... More >>
22 hours ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 11:42:00 AM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Two MU residence halls and an atrium were officially dedicated on Friday honoring three former MU students. Lucile... More >>
1 day ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 10:09:00 AM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
WASHINGTON (AP) — Just 1 in 4 people thinks Brett Kavanaugh was completely honest when as a Supreme Court nominee... More >>
1 day ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 9:58:13 AM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
(CNN) -- The US moved closer to acknowledging the role of Saudi Arabia in journalist Jamal Khashoggi's apparent death as... More >>
1 day ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 9:36:16 AM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
RANDOLPH COUNTY - MoDOT announced they will close Randolph County Route CC from Route FF to Route K on Monday,... More >>
1 day ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 8:30:00 AM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
FLORISSANT (AP) — Authorities have arrested a suburban St. Louis student after finding a loaded gun and a razor inside... More >>
1 day ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 7:46:15 AM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
ST. CHARLES, Mo. (AP) — A Missouri man has been sentenced to life in prison in the 1984 beating death... More >>
1 day ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 7:10:00 AM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — A Kansas City doctor has been sentenced to a year in federal prison for his... More >>
1 day ago Friday, October 19 2018 Oct 19, 2018 Friday, October 19, 2018 6:51:00 AM CDT October 19, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 53°
11am 56°
12pm 58°
1pm 59°
2pm 60°