Opioid use, practically heroin, has been on a sharp increase in recent years. With opioid overdoses growing, drugs capable of reversing an overdose have been released for public use. The most common of these is Naloxone, otherwise known as Narcan. Unfortunately many in the public fear going to get Narcan, so Mister Narcan will hit the streets to bring this miracle life saver to the general public.
Narcan is carried by police officers and EMS personnel. In many jurisdictions, any citizen can get a dose of Narcan to keep on hand. Studies have shown that citizens know they can get it legally, many fear to do so.
The general consensus seems to be, cops will target people seeking Narcan. So friends and family of addicts are not keeping it in the home. Instead, they hope that a call to 911 will get the much-needed reversal in time.
To address these fears Mister Narcan will hit the streets bringing Narcan to people. Raymond Dee PhD, director of the Over Dose No (ODN) is the person responsible for the Mister Narcan concept.
“It was a warm summer day and I was watching the kids. My car was in the shop and the wife was out shopping. The kids started to ask for ice cream. The freezer was empty. I was screwed. But then off in the distance, I heard the music. The Ice Cream Truck was coming, I as a dad was saved.”
Dr. Dee explained how that Monday when sitting at an ODN meeting his remembering that ice cream truck was the genesis point. Now eight months later his idea is a reality.
“Mister Narcan is like both an ice cream truck and also like a food truck. We will be out patrolling neighborhood known for heroin abuse. Anyone can flag down the truck to get a dosage anonymously. In addition, we will park in locations for periods of time. Much like food trucks, we will use social media, like Twitter, to let people know where Mister Narcan is parked. This will allow people to come to us if they did not see us driving by.”
ODN is a non-profit that is supported by both private donations and a percentage of monies confiscated in drug raids. The Narcan doses are given away free of charge to anyone, and no ID cards will be checks.
According to Dr. Dee, “With Mister Narcan in your neighborhood, there is no reason your family should not have the ability to save the life of a loved one who is having an overdose.”
Mister Narcan will initially roll out in select markets. The hope is to have one truck in every major city within the next five years.