SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) – Opioid overdoses are less common in Iowa, but they still happen. Now, people in the state will have more access to a life-saving rescue kit to help reverse an overdose.
Narcan kits have been available for Iowans without a prescription since 2017. A federal grant is being used to distribute more than 3,000 free test kits throughout the state.
The Sioux City Police Department received Narcan kits last fall, and officers are trained to identify an opioid overdose and how to use the kits.
Sergeant Jeremy McClure said the kits have proven critical in saving lives.
“If we come across someone we think is having an opioid overdose, they’re not breathing properly, lips turning blue, but they still have a heartbeat. We take our Narcan kit, and then we’d insert the applicator into their nostril and deploy that into their nose,” McClure said.
The kit includes two Narcan doses with one spray per bottle. McClure adds the overdose begins to reverse within minutes.
“We have had officers come across people at a traffic stop that was having an opioid overdose. They use the Narcan kit, and within a few minutes, that person started becoming responsive again,” McClure said.
Lindsay Landrum is the director of the Warming Shelter.
She said they don’t have Narcan kits on hand, but they’re hoping to get some.
“Having Narcan on hand is always great because you don’t know what people are always using because they’re not always honest about what they’re using. So, if we were able to get our hands on the kits and get our staff to learn the training, that’s always great to have,” Landrum added.
McClure said if someone has an opioid prescription, they should also consider getting a Narcan kit, just in case of an accidental overdose.
According to the Food and Drug Administration, the average retail price is around $140 for a Narcan kit containing 2 units.
You can find participating pharmacies here.
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