Capital Region Sheriff’s continued battle against drug overdoses

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CAPITAL REGION, N.Y. (NEWS10) – In efforts to fight the deadly drug crisis, local law enforcement agencies are stepping up to help save lives.

The epidemic of the pandemic, the Capital Region continues to see a major uptick in drug overdoses.

“Opioids are still here, they haven’t gone away, and we still need to get the right stuff out into the community,” said Columbia County Sheriff David Bartlett. 

First responders from the following Sheriff’s Offices: Albany, Columbia, Fulton, Greene, Montgomery, Rensselaer, Saratoga, Schenectady, Warren and Washington counties will begin distributing Leave-Behind Naloxone kits after responding to non-fatal overdose cases in the communities they serve.

The sheriffs in the Capital Region are joining forces with the New York State Sheriffs’ Association, Albany Medical Center and the Regional Medical Organization.

“Officers can leave these with people or the families of people who may be at the risk of opioid overdose. Then they can treat that overdose and save a life while their waiting for the 911 response,” said Dr. Michael Dailey, Albany Med emergency physician, and Regional EMS Medical Director.

Courtney Breslin, the Narcan trainer for the Regional Medical Organization says this life-saving kit could make all the difference.

“It brings somebody not breathing or breathing very ineffectively to breathing normally, waking up and talking to you,” said Breslin.  

The kit will include a card with community resources available that can offer support to patient and family.

On Thursday each county was given 20 kits to start and more will be coming soon.

“Each kit comes with a pair of medical training gloves, actual Narcan, an antibacterial wipe, and just a little hand out on how to use it,” said Breslin.

“We probably be looking at closer to 100 kids. Albany and Saratoga would get 100 kits. It depends on the size of the agency. Dr. Dailey already placed more orders so we can get more kits,” said Sheriff Bartlett.

Sheriff Bartlett says they are one step closer to breaking the chain of addiction. The New York State Sheriffs’ Association hopes to expand the program statewide.

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