first_imgThe Ocean City Fire Department recently completed the initial training to administer Naloxone/Narcan, and the department now carries the heroin antidote on all its EMT and other department vehicles.New legislation in New Jersey allows EMTs to carry the medication, which has proven extremely effective in preventing overdose deaths at a time when heroin use is at an all-time high. Statewide, drug-related deaths topped 1,290 in 2012, up about 270 from the year before.“We haven’t seen it too often,” Breunig said of heroin overdoses in Ocean City  relative to other areas of Cape May County. But he said the drug is present in town and that the department wants to be prepared.“While heroin is gaining in popularity, we also see a rapid rise in prescription drug abuse,” Breunig said.The state’s passing of the Opioid Antidote and Overdose Prevention Act last year allows first responders and the public to carry the drug, which is administered through a nasal spray or injection into a muscle.The medication counteracts the effects of opioid drugs. Commonly known opioid drugs are heroin, morphine, hydrocodone, oxycodone, oxycotin, percocet, dulaudid, codine, Tylenol 3 and other various synthetic forms of the drug.“Minutes count when a person stops breathing and by administering this drug we are able to counteract the effects and save someone’s life,” Breunig said.last_img

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