Home Nalox­one Kits see rise in us­age

The Drumheller Mail - - CLASSIFIEDS - Terri Hux­ley

More and more Al­ber­tans are ac­cess­ing the un­lim­ited sup­ply of home nalox­one kits from lo­cal drug­stores.

Nalox­one is a drug that can be used in an emer­gency over­dose sit­u­a­tion. It’s a tem­po­rary solution to pre­vent the per­son from com­pletely fail­ing be­fore med­i­cal ser­vices ar­rive.

“Short story: It blocks the re­cep­tors so that it takes away the opi­ates so they don’t get to the brain and cause the dam­age that it does, it does a tem­po­rary block,” said Ray Ain­scough of River­side Value Drug Mart.

Fen­tanyl is a unique drug as its po­tency is of a much larger ca­pac­ity and has man­made com­po­nents com­pared to nat­u­ral opioids. It is typ­i­cally meant for pain re­lief in a hos­pi­tal.

Signs of an over­dose from Fen­tanyl can be seen from phys­i­cal symp­toms like weak mus­cles, dizzi­ness, con­fu­sion, pro­foundly slow heart­beat, low blood pres­sure, or a bluish tint to lips and nails.

The Opioids and Sub­stances of Mis­use Al­berta Re­port ex­plained that by the sec­ond quar­ter of 2017, 241 deaths have been re­ported due to Fen­tanyl over­doses.

The re­port also stated that in the sec­ond quar­ter, 81 per cent of over­doses hap­pened in large ur­ban cen­tres such as Cal­gary or Ed­mon­ton, leav­ing a mere 19 per cent to smaller pop­u­la­tions or ru­ral ar­eas. 85 deaths were recorded last year in­di­cat­ing a rise of us­age in the lethal drug.

Each kit con­tains three doses of Nalox­one, three nee­dles with sup­plies, gloves, respi- ra­tor and a how-to guide for ad­min­is­ter­ing the shot. When giv­ing the shot, it is rec­om­mended to aim for a mus­cle like an arm or a leg.

Al­berta Health Ser­vices has pro­vided in­for­ma­tion on where to find phar­ma­cies or walk-in clin­ics. The link can be found here: http://www.al­ber­ta­health­ser­vices.ca/info/ Page15586.aspx or sim­ply search for Home Nalox­one Kits on­line.

Nalox­one Kits are avail­able at three dif­fer­ent lo­ca­tions in Drumheller; Ex­tra Foods Phar­macy, River­side Value Drug Mart, and Shop­pers Drug Mart.

“It’s 100 per cent cov­ered by the govern­ment, this is some­thing they came out with to try to save lives,” said Ain­scough. “If there’s a price not ev­ery­one will get it.”

Ain­scough ex­plains the kit can be help­ful in many dif­fer­ent sit­u­a­tions and is not re­stricted to just Fen­tanyl use.

“It can be used for other over­doses as well be­cause it blocks it,” con­tin­ued Ain­scough. “Now you have to re­mem­ber it’s a tem­po­rary fix. It’s not you give that shot and all of a sud­den ev­ery­thing is great and good to go, I call it 15 min­utes. It buys you time to get to emer­gency.”

Cur­rent or pre­vi­ous users of opioids can ac­cess the kits for free.

“If you think you need to get it, get it.”

“Plain and sim­ple.”

mailphoto by Terri Hux­ley

Owner Ray Ain­scough of River­side Value Drug Mart in Drumheller holds a Home Nalox­one Kit. In­side con­tains three shots of Nalox­one, three nee­dles with sup­plies, gloves, a res­cue mask for CPR, and a howto guide to ad­min­is­ter­ing the shot.

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