Florida Health Departments Providing Naloxone to Help Stop Overdose Deaths

By Lydia Nusbaum, Florida's Voice

September 6, 2022 Updated 3:42 PM ET

Opioids, (K-State Research and Extension).
Opioids, (K-State Research and Extension).

TALLAHASSEE (FLV) – Naloxone will be available at 16 Florida county health departments to help prevent opioid overdoses.

The Florida Department of Health said county access to the treatment will save thousands of lives across the state. Naloxone is a medication that reverses the effects of an opioid overdose. It restores breathing and consciousness to someone who has overdosed.

The first phase of the program will take place in Baker, Bradford, Union, Franklin, Gulf, Gadsden, Gilcrest, Levy, Glades, Hendry, Hamilton, Hardee Jefferson, Madison, Lafayette, and Suwanee county health departments. The next phase will expand naloxone distribution to all 67 county health departments.

“Addressing the opioid epidemic is a top priority for the state,” said Deputy Secretary for Health Dr. Kenneth A. Scheppke. “In 2021, almost 8,000 people in Florida lost their lives to drug overdoses, the highest one-year total ever recorded in our state.”

The Overdose Prevention Program is in collaboration between the Florida Department of Health and the Florida Department of Children and Families.

Florida Expands Opioid Recovery Program: ‘Addiction is Heartbreaking’

Gov. Ron DeSantis also announced in August the expansion of a pilot program to help people suffering from substance abuse. The governor’s office said the network of addiction care called Coordinated Opioid Recovery (CORE) as the first of its kind in the nation.

Floridians can use CORE to receive medical assisted treatment and for stabilization. The program was piloted in Palm Beach County for nearly two years. CORE will be expanded in two phases. Phase one counties include Brevard, Clay, Duval, Escambia, Gulf, Manatee, Marion, Pasco, and Volusia counties.

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