This editorial was first published by Newsday’s editorial board.
The U.S. surgeon general issued a rare advisory April 5 regarding the nation’s opioid epidemic, and his simple message is worth heeding: More Americans should carry naloxone.
Naloxone, the drug commonly known as Narcan, quickly reverses the effects of an opioid overdose. And there were more than 42,000 such overdose deaths nationally in 2016. Dr. Jerome Adams’ list of those who should have naloxone and know how to use it included opioid users, their families and friends, healthcare practitioners and anyone who comes into contact with people at risk for an opioid overdose. In other words, almost all of us.
Find out how to obtain it. Get training in using it in sessions offered frequently by libraries, hospitals, local governments and agencies like the Long Island Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence.
As Adams noted: Be prepared. Get naloxone. Save a life.