Opioid overdoses have increased the need for implementing harm reduction, notably within complex and diverse settings such as homeless shelters.
SAMHSA encourages homeless and housing service providers to make naloxone available and to train providers, people experiencing homelessness, and their friends and family to administer the lifesaving remedy.
Provision of naloxone is an evidence-based intervention that can save lives by blocking or reversing the effects of a heroin or opioid overdose. Incorporating naloxone into homelessness services encourages drug users to engage with treatment services and helps to keep them alive until they are ready to address their drug using behavior (should they wish to do so).
It is important to remember that the intervention is not just about providing naloxone: training people to recognize the signs of overdose and how to respond appropriately are key steps in reducing drug-related deaths.
Contact your Regional Overdose Prevention Specialist (ROPS) for training details.