The Seattle Police Department announced on Thursday that with a $5,000 donation from nonprofit Police Assisted Addiction and Recovery Initiative (PAARI), the department will be able to double the amount of naloxone kits officers have to stop fatal opioid overdoses.
Sixty SPD bike officers started carrying naloxone, or Narcan, two years ago. The department says that it has successfully intervened in 24 overdoses since. Now, the department will be able to buy 100 more naloxone kits and place them inside patrol cars, too.
“Naloxone is an invaluable tool for reversing opioid overdoses quickly, but it is also a great engagement tool that allows the general public to see police as a source of help during an emergency,” Caleb Banta-Green , senior research scientist at the University of Washington Alcohol and Drug Abuse Institute, said in a statement.
Yesterday, the US Surgeon General also issued a statement recommending that people at risk of overdose, as well as family and friends, keep naloxone on hand. According to the Washington State Department of Health, 690 reported overdosed were reversed in the state using naloxone in 2016.