Chief Fitch wants heroin antidote in County police cars
CLAYTON, MO (KTVI) – St. Louis County Police Chief Tim Fitch wants a heroin antidote in police cars. This is according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
The Post’s Christine Byers recalls the story of a Quincy, Massachusetts officer who was recently flagged down by a driver. That driver had a victim in the backseat who was overdosing on heroin. The Quincy officer administered a nasal-spray form of naloxone, also known as Narcan. He saved the victim.
Heroin is an opiate drug. Opiates can send signals to the brain that could stop a user from breathing. Doctors say the nasal spray antidote is absorbed more quickly by the body than an injection.
Fitch told the Post his officers have often arrived at the scene of an overdose before paramedics. But if a patient has stopped breathing, the only thing local police can do is CPR until EMS arrives.
Doctors also warn that the nasal spray can act so quickly, the patient can suffer extreme and sudden withdrawal symptoms. They say the state may need to set regulations before officers start administering this drug.