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Drug to counteract opioid overdose now available at New Rochelle schools

All school nurses are required to go through special training to administer naloxone

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During what seems like a growing epidemic of drug addiction and overdoses, naloxone, a nasal spray injection that can quickly revive a heroin overdosed individual, is becoming more available. Police and emergency responders carry it, and now the potentially life-saving drug will also be in the hands of school nurses.

"When you give naloxone and it enters the system, it knocks the drug off the cell receptors and it adheres tightly. It rescues you from the effects of an overdose," said Dr. Adrienne Weiss-Harrison.

Dr. Weiss-Harrison, the medical director of the New Rochelle city school district, says every school in the city now has this naloxone kit. She demonstrated how the kit works and told FiOS1 News that every nurse in the district had to go through special training sessions and webinars to learn how to administer it.

"To us, we want to be able to respond to anything that happens,” added Dr. Weiss. “The same way that they have an EpiPen for severe allergic reaction, they have oxygen for somebody who is having a severe asthma attack and they have a defibrillator in someone has a cardiac episode. They want to be able to help them respond if somebody is suddenly unresponsive."

Parents are comforted knowing the school is making sure students are top priority during a time when these kits seem to be increasingly need.

"It's a good thing, it's a good thing. I work for the school system, it is a growing problem," said Bonnie Jackson, a New Rochelle parent.

"It's a necessary thing because we are out here for the youth,” added Lavone Mott, another parent. “You know what I'm saying? We can't have these kids out here overdosing."

Although there has never been an overdose inside any of the schools Weiss oversees, in a tragic reality, reports say that it does occur.



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