Surgeon General recommends expanding naloxone access

Surgeon General recommends expanding naloxone access

The surgeon general announced Thursday that he encourages people to carry a drug that revives victims of overdoses.

Dr. Jerome Adams made a statement today saying family members of those at risk of overdose should carry naloxone, a drug that combats the effects of opioid overdoses.

The drug, also called Narcan or Evzio, is already carried by emergency responders. Efforts are underway to make the drug more available.

Cheryl Wittke, of Safe Communities Madison-Dane County, said she agrees with the surgeon general’s statement.

“You know family members. If you got any concern about a family member who is dealing with an opioid addiction, really, we encourage everybody to have it. We have trainings through the Parent Addiction Network where family members, anybody can come to a quarterly training that we offer with AIDS Resource Center of Wisconsin to get naloxone and be trained on how to use it. So really, yes, everybody should have it,” Wittke said.

According to Wittke, overdose deaths often occur when a family member who could have administered naloxone, is in the next room.

The number of opioid overdose deaths has doubled since 2010. The announcement from the surgeon general shows the extent of the opioid crisis.

The advisory considers those at risk for overdose as individuals who take opioid prescriptions for pain and those abusing opioid drugs, including heroin.