Narcan isn't a magic potion. When injected into a muscle, it takes between three and five minutes to start working. If the person dying isn't breathing on their own, then you or someone else must breath for them until Narcan takes effect (like CPR.) Calling 911 must be done. Even after administering Narcan, the person must be taken to the emergency room. The danger isn't over. They can slip into another overdose.
The writer of “A little too far” (VND, June 4) states that Narcan is an enabler. I have startling news: an addict doesn't need to be enabled to use a drug. The availability of sterile needles and Narcan isn't going to make one bit of difference whether an addict uses or not. The gateway ‘enabler' myth has been around forever. Remember when rolling papers were going to turn everyone into reefer fiends? A person who has no interest in using opiates is now going to use because of safe needles and Narcan? I don't think so.
It was also mentioned that we are talking about illegal drugs. I assume the writer means heroin. Heroin is the only Class 1 opiate in the United States. All other opiates are considered Class II substances (legal.) If someone is dying from an opiate overdose, do you think it matters whether the drug is illegal or not? Dead is dead! It is okay because the drug was legal, just misused? Let's save the life and worry about legal or illegal later. I know that it's hard sometimes to remember that an addict is a member of someone's family. Hopefully loved, maybe not. If a member of my family were dying from an overdose, I'd be praying for a case of Narcan.
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