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Lebanon County’s Stronger Together heroin task force will hold several events this spring to continue their life-saving efforts at distributing Naloxone to the public.

Naloxone, brand name Narcan, is a life-saving drug that can reverse an overdose caused by an opioid by blocking the effects of opioids on the brain.

Narcan training and distribution events will be held on the following dates:

Thursday, April 14, 2-5 p.m. at Mazzitti & Sullivan in Palmyra (Facebook event)

Friday, May 13, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Lebanon Family Health Services (Facebook event)

During the events, residents of Lebanon County will be able to drop-in and receive information on recognizing and reversing opiate overdoses using Narcan. The Narcan comes to the county through a state program, and it is the task force’s job to distribute it.

Administration of naloxone is covered under Good Samaritan laws. Members of the public wishing to be trained in naloxone administration should visit GetNaloxoneNow, which maintains a well-regarded training module on the topic. According to the state, you are immune from liability for giving naloxone if you believed the person was suffering from an opioid overdose (heroin or prescription pain medication) and you called for medical help/911 after giving the medication.

Naloxone availability is widely credited as one of the driving mechanisms behind year-over-year decreases in overdose deaths now being seen across the nation. Although fentanyl remains a major threat to public health, the number of overdose deaths in Lebanon County decreased in 2021 compared to 2020. James R. Donmoyer Jr., director of the Commission on Drug and Alcohol Abuse, told the Lebanon County Commissioners in March that Narcan distribution helped lower the number of deaths, with 631 kits distributed in 2021, a substantial increase from previous years.

Donmoyer credited the Stronger Together task force for their help bringing greater awareness to areas where it was most needed by using ZIP code-based overdose data to target events.

“They’re in the field, they’re in the streets, they’re doing grass-root types of things, so I want to commend the task force for their work,” Donmoyer told the Lebanon County Commissioners last month.

More Narcan distribution events are likely to be added for this year. The task force is also planning an Overdose Awareness Vigil for Aug. 31, as well as the annual Recovery Day event for Sept. 24.

Find more information about these events and the task force in general on their website, StrongerTogetherLebanonCo.com.

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