Andy O'Brien plunged directly into the topic of abuse of opiates such as heroin or prescription pills. People need help and DuPage County needs help to tackle the problem, he admitted.
"We can not help people get better when they're dead," said O'Brien, a clinician at the DuPage County Health Department. For this reason, O & Br) and DuPage County health officials administered Narcan, the naloxone antidote spray, to all attending participants during a meeting on opioid abuse.
DuPage County health officials led the one-hour training course for the public At their Wheaton headquarters, they give attendees an overview of opioids, antidotes, and how to tackle an overdose. The dozens present left the session with the Narcan Spray, along with some instructions on using the antidote, which reverses an opioid overdose almost instantaneously.
"I can now wear a narcan in my purse," said Daniela Munoz. An employee at Glen Ellyn's Teen Parent Connection. Teen Parent Connection employees like Munoz work with vulnerable members of the community, including those who struggle with drug addiction.
Wednesday was the second public session this year by the DuPage County Health Department on narcan application and opioid overdose awareness. Training is a necessity in the county because the "fearsome realities" of heroin overdoses remain a significant concern in DuPage, health officials said.
O & Brien said, communities and Authorities need to work together to prevent more deaths. As a result, training sessions on how to use the spray have extended beyond the law enforcement officers and emergency responders.
A training session in Lisle this spring attracted overcapacity, Health Ambassador Don Bolger said. Another public meeting is planned for later in the summer.
O'Brien gave Wednesday's Wheaton Audience a quick course on opioids and how Naloxone antidotes work to combat overdoses, among other things.
He also showed how to use Narcan on someone by video and in person.  [email protected]
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