The Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox and Addington (KFL&A) Public Health announced today it is working with partners to increase access to naloxone, a life saving medication for opioid users, while also expanding other harm reduction services.
The agency is now an access point for free nasal spray naloxone kits, which will be provided to anyone who is at risk of an opioid overdose as well as to their friends and family members and friends. Also included are people who is in a position to help someone at risk of an opioid overdose.
The number of opioid overdoses continues to increase across the province, with the following factors provided by KFL&A Public Health as indicators of people most at risk of an overdose:
• taking prescription opioids,
• buying opioids from the street and don’t know how strong they are,
• buying street drugs that could be laced with opioids,
• have overdosed on opioids before,
• are mixing opioids with other downers like alcohol or benzos (e.g., Valium or Xanax),
• have stopped using opioids for a while, which has lowered their tolerance,
• have just been released from jail and hasn’t used opioids in a while, or
• are using opioids by themselves.
Naloxone kits are available at KFL&A Public Health at 221 Portsmouth Avenue office Monday to Friday between 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. and 1:00 to 4:00 p.m.
Free nasal spray naloxone kits are also available to clients of Street Health Centre and free injection naloxone kits are available at many local community pharmacies.
KFL&A Public Health is also partnering with community organizations such as shelters, withdrawal management centres, and other related outreach programs so people in the KFL&A area can find naloxone kits at a variety of convenient locations.
On Tuesday, the City of Kingston endorsed this effort. See this Council Meetings pdf document (begins on page 4)