Kahla Cobb of the Sullivan County Anti–Drug coalition was at the Johnson City Public Library on September 5th, distributing “overdose” kits that included Narcan, a nasal spray version of naloxone. Narcan is a medication that can reverse an overdose of opioids when given in time. In the kits, fentanyl test strips that can be used to determine if a purchased drug is laced with the extremely dangerous synthetic opioid were included. Over 50 overdose kits were administered, as many of the recipients had seen fentanyl overdoses hit close to home.
Jennifer Berven, Insight Alliance’s director, says studies show that those with access to harm reduction strategies such as naloxone are more likely to enter into a recovery program. Frankie Nunley, a peer recovery specialist from Insight Alliance, said the effort is more critical now than ever, as fentanyl used to be pressed into pills but is now being laced in marijuana and methamphetamines. Because of this, educating people on harm reduction and the importance of having Narcan is essential.
Insight Alliance plans to visit JCPL every third Wednesday of the month to distribute Narcan.