Ravalli County Introduces Nalaxone to Counter Opiod Overdoses
Ravalli County Sheriff Steve Holton says his office has trained deputies and detention officers in the use of the opiod counter drug called Narcan, the brand name for the opiod antagonist drug called Nalaxone.
“We actually started this last fall and secured about $3,000 in grant funding from the Montana Board of Crime Control,” said Holton. “As we were going through that process, the state came on board with a program that we were able to get some specific training so that we can replace it once we use it.”
Holton describes how Narcan works to counter opiods in a victim.
“It’s a nasal administration, and it’s really easy and it’s been in use across the country for many years,” he said. “What it does is it counteracts the effects of opiods in the body through a nasal canister. We started it because we wanted our deputies to be prepared to protect themselves in the case of accidental contact with opiods to include Fentanyl. We have a lot of opiod cases in the Bitterroot Valley specifically in medical calls that we can actually save people’s lives by administering this prior to the ambulance arriving.”
Holton said he sent two of his deputies out of state and they became certified Master Trainers.
“The beauty of that is they can train our staff now and to include our detention officers, and if we use a dose of Narcan, or if it expires, we can replace it at no cost through the state program,” he said.
Holton said Undersheriff Travis McElderry spearheaded the project last fall to secure the original grant funding, and Deputies Joe Marble and Vlad Mykhaylyuk are the RCSO master trainers for the project.