Need for Narcan increasing as drug overdoses become more frequent
GULFPORT, Miss. (WLOX) - Mississippi continues to face an opioid crisis, with hundreds dying from overdose deaths in our state every year.
An emergency can happen anywhere, anytime.
American Medical Response Chief Charles Wise told WLOX distress calls of drug overdoses are happening more frequently.
“Last year, AMR and agencies here on the Coast responded to over 882 requests for potential overdoses,” said Wise.
Out of that number, paramedics administered Narcan to 672 patients.
“From 2020 to 2021, the overdose deaths that were recorded by the CDC number of overdoses death rose by 15%,” Wise said.
Wise remembers injecting a patient with the medicine on a recent call.
“The worst ones are when you respond to where there’s a family member who’s there with that family member who has overdosed. We administer Narcan. Sometimes it works. Sometimes it may be too late where the Narcan is not going to work at that time,” Wise said.
AMR paramedics receive around four reports per week.
Other first responders, like Wiggins Fire Chief Jody Hatten, are noticing an upward trend in numbers too.
“People get drugs that they’re not supposed to have, and they think it is something else. They think it’s a medication, but it’s been laced with a fentanyl or some opioid they’re not aware of,” Hatten said.
Medical agencies encourage folks to seek medical help if they’re struggling with addiction or recovery.
For help with drug rehabilitation, CLICK HERE.
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