Cincinnati PD fight heroin epidemic with Narcan

Cincinnati PD fight heroin epidemic with Narcan

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - Cincinnati Police add a new device to their uniform, but it's not to fight crime, it's to save lives.

is what some people call a miracle drug, reviving people who have overdosed from heroin.

“Now fire has brought people back that have overdosed in eight to nine minutes so it's a very successful rate,” said Officer Lisa Davis, part of Cincinnati Police Department's Quality of Life Team.

Currently first responders use the drug. Cincinnati Police Chief, Jeffrey Blackwell, says by allowing police officers the ability to distribute the medication they can reach those who have overdosed more quickly.

“Our cops don't want to wait around for medical to help them help someone,” he said.

Two police districts, Central Business Section and Quality of Life Officers, will test Narcan for the next six months in a pilot program as Cincinnati Police Department collect data.

Cincinnati Police Department has purchased 100 doses of Narcan from Heart Pharmacy costing $2,500.

Once police administer the drug, the heroin user will be taken to the hospital for treatment. If they refuse to go, officers will put a ‘mental hold' on the user because there is a chance they can overdose again after 30 minutes.

The fact that CPD will now be carrying the drug is welcome news for Nicole Roos, whose daughter has been using heroin for six years.

"I would want to let my daughter live," Said Roos. "I mean yes she's a drug addict but why should I have to bury her?"

If the heroin user has drug paraphernalia on them, officers will take the user to jail and they will face charges. 

Narcan does come with some criticism. People say it enables heroin addicts to continue using. Chief Blackwell says no one wants to overdose from the drug. 

"We have a responsibility to help save lives when and where we can. If we can give a person a second change we can give them the help they need to stay alive," he said.

Copyright 2014 WXIX. All rights reserved.