Retired firefighter-paramedic spends savings on naloxone, gives it away for free

Luis Garcia is giving away free doses of the lifesaving drug to local businesses that could potentially encounter an overdose


This article, originally published Oct. 26, 2017, has been updated with current information

By News Staff

PALM CITY, Fla. — A retired firefighter-paramedic is giving away free naloxone to help fight the opioid epidemic.

WPTV reported that Luis Garcia is using his own savings to buy naloxone doses and hand them out to employees of local businesses that could potentially encounter a drug overdose. 

According to the Daytona Beach News-Journal, Garcia has purchased 800 doses of naloxone to distribute across the state as part of his South Florida Opioid Crisis Mortality Reduction Project.

Not only does Garcia hand out the doses, he also gives a 90-minute CPR, AED and naloxone class to instruct the employees on how to respond to an overdose situation.

“I witnessed the AIDS crisis and the cocaine crisis. We’re going to find that the opioid pandemic in the USA will far exceed the number of deaths from all of that combined,” Garcia said. “Virtually all these deaths are preventable. Many would live to go into recovery if only someone was there to give them Narcan.”

Garcia also works to change the way addicts are viewed. 

“I really believe every human life is worth saving,” he said. “Misconceptions and negative thinking about others makes it harder to fight this crisis.”

You can follow Garcia’s overdose-reducing efforts here.

 

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