- Associated Press - Wednesday, October 19, 2016

COEUR D’ALENE, Idaho (AP) - Northern Idaho law enforcement officials are considering having officers carry a drug that reverse heroin overdoses.

Post Falls Police Chief Scot Haug met with other local law enforcement officials on Monday to discuss the possibility of having officers carry Narcan spray, which is an FDA-approved spray for the emergency treatment of opioid-related overdoses, The Coeur d’Alene Press reported (https://bit.ly/2ekrOLQ).

“If there are things we can do to save someone’s life, even just one life, those things are worth pursuing,” Haug said.

Currently, emergency medical services personnel carry and administer the anti-overdose drug, but police officers do not do so.

For Coeur d’Alene Police Chief Lee White, that may be enough.

“Giving this drug just a couple seconds quicker than the fire department would, I don’t know if that’s the best course of action,” White added. “I trust our EMS folks implicitly - they’re the people that deal with this every day.”

White and Kootenai County Sheriff Ben Wolfinger were also at the meeting about Narcan on Monday.

White said he wasn’t sure what the best course of action is, as he still has questions about the product, including the $150 price tag and storage issues.

“Our patrol cars are frequently turned off and parked in front of someone’s house or sometimes in our back lot,” he said. “The Narcan needs to be kept between 59 and 86 degrees. That presents a little bit of a problem for us here during the winter in Coeur d’Alene.”

White said hopefully the price will go down. “If we could save even one life, it would be worth the cost,” he said.

The conversation Monday comes as pharmacies at all Albertsons and Safeway stores in north Idaho have announced they will begin dispensing the drug without a prescription.


Information from: Coeur d’Alene Press, https://www.cdapress.com

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