Lincoln County receives $20K Narcan grant

Published 4:18 pm Thursday, December 8, 2016

STANFORD – The Lincoln County Health Department plans to use grant funding to put a drug that reverses the effects of opioid-related overdoses in the hands of local first responders.
The $20,000 grant, awarded through the Kentucky Agency for Substance Abuse Policy (ASAP), is going to be used to purchase several Narcan (also referred to as naloxone) kits.
The rate of heroin-use across the state continues to rise and as health officials warn of the risks associated with intravenous drug-use, such as the spread of HIV, many local health departments have put needle-exchange programs in place. Local ASAP boards have also applied for harm-reduction grants which can be used in some ways for syringe exchanges as well as for Narcan programs.
An overdose training hosted by Lincoln County Safe Communities at the local library was held Nov. 15 with 32 people in attendance.
“A lot of law enforcement, school nurses and myself as a health department representative, were present to receive the training,” said Lincoln County Health Department Director Diane Miller.
The “Voices of Hope” overdose response training covered topics such as how to recognize an overdose, who is at risk for an overdose, the Kentucky Good Samaritan Law and how to respond to an overdose. The training was free and provided local law enforcement, school officials and other interested parties with Narcan, also referred to as naloxone.
“We’re going to put Narcan in the possession of law enforcement, emergency services and at the schools for potential overdose,” Miller said.
The health department has already received the first installment of $10,000, Miller said.
“The Department of Public Health also has a mobile unit that goes across the state that has Narcan and a doctor on the unit, as well as a pharmacist,” she said. “They look at the counties with the most need and go to (that) county. It’s open to the public and when they go in they can receive Narcan and of course, the education with the doctor and pharmacist right then.”
Miller said it’s possible the mobile unit will visit Lincoln County but right now they are focusing on counties at higher risk.
In order to receive Narcan kits, Miller said departments will be able to send a request to the local ASAP board and the health department will ensure it is ordered and received.
“At our next ASAP board meeting, we will have to have a discussion. If we are going to distribute it (Narcan) to the public, then we will need to set some guidelines. But our first priority was to make sure that response agencies had it in their hands first.”