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Initiative gives over 2,000 Narcan kits to Mass. county first responders

Overdose kits have been distributed to first responders in 11 communities in Hampden County


Doses of Narcan nasal spray to combat opioid overdoses, are carried in a medical kit in Springfield police cruisers.

Don Treeger/The Republican

By Dave Canton

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. — An initiative between the Hampden County District Attorney’s Office and Baystate Health, Trinity Health and the Center for Human Development has provided more than 2,870 doses of an opioid overdose antidote to area police and fire departments so far.

The medication, known as naloxone or the brand name Narcan, is administered with a special injector through the nose of an overdose victim and can quickly counteract the effects of opioid drugs. It is easy to administer and is effective if given quickly.

The organizations have committed more than $250,000 to the program since its inception in October 2018, according to a statement issued by the DA’s office Friday.

“We have received hundreds of Naloxone does through this program,” West Springfield Police Chief Paul Connor said. “It helps to supplement our budget and allows for more training and purchasing of medical supplies for our first responder program. The Hampden County Municipal Narcan Initiative has been an overwhelming success for our agency and more importantly the community we serve.”

District Attorney Anthony D. Gulluni said the DA’s office has provided a series of grants to the program, totaling about $176,000 while Baystate Health has contributed approximately $40,000 and keeps a supply of naloxone in its pharmacy to supply area agencies on an “as needed” basis.

“Tragically, the opioid crisis has not abated as we continue to lose people daily to this disease. Ensuring local first responders have this necessary life-saving medication in order to assist those suffering from addiction is crucial to our life-saving efforts,” Gulluni said. “Through our partnerships, we continue to combat this crisis by helping people suffering from addiction while bringing to justice those who wish to profit from it.”

To date, the antidote has been distributed to first responders in 11 communities: the Springfield Police and Fire Departments, the Westfield Police Department, Chicopee Police and Fire Departments, Holyoke Police and Fire Departments, Longmeadow Police and Fire Departments, the Agawam Police Department, Wilbraham Police and Fire departments, West Springfield Police and Fire departments, the Ludlow Police Department, the East Longmeadow Fire Department, and Blandford Police and Fire departments.

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