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The Cat's Eye

The Cat's Eye

The Cat's Eye

Narcan: the antidote to the overdose epidemic

A graphic of Narcan being illuminated by a glowing orb in the background.

The National Institute on Drug Abuse reported that in 2021 the deaths caused by drug overdose came to an immense total of 106,699. The leading cause of these overdoses were synthetic opioids, specifically being laced with fentanyl. 

On March 29, 2023, the FDA announced that Narcan, an over-the-counter active opioid antagonist, would become readily available at local pharmacies and hospitals across the United States. Yet, parents and peers may still question how Narcan can become a life saver at schools across the nation.

Essentially, when administered in a timely manner, Narcan can potentially reverse the effects of an overdose. 

“We have multiple dosages on campus,” Assistant Principal of Achievement Mr. Jeremy Hansen said. “Our nurse Yolanda Warren manages the placement of these dosages on campus.” 

According to the Assembly Committee on Education, led by Al Muratschi, the dangers Fentanyl can have on a school campus are detrimental. This committee bill enforces that 2 doses of Narcan should be available on a campus at all times in the case that a medical emergency takes place. Each capsule of Narcan contains 2mg of the spray fluid. By inserting the capsule in the patient’s nostril will reverse the effects of the overdose if administered quickly and timely manner.

“We did have a case where Narcan was used on campus it was used by health services which was very beneficial to the person,” Hansen said.

According to the California Department of Public Health, there were nearly 6,000 opioid-related overdose deaths in California. Some of these opioid-related overdoses occurred in California schools, which drove school districts to train school nurses and staff to be trained in administering Narcan. 

“Our staff is trained to see the warning signs and state of someone, but if you see someone in a clear lethargic state or clear medical distress, immediately report it to a campus officer,” Hansen said.

Recently, Governor Gavin Newsom signed California Assembly Bill 2760. This bill would place a certificate training program for public middle school and high school students to gain knowledge and skill in how to administer the usage of Narcan in an emergency situation. This bill will be put into fruition with students in 2025.

“Our staff got trained last year before Narcan became available over the counter. The most important thing to our staff was having it on campus and knowing how to use it,” Dr. Sherry Berwick, the Assistant Principal of Instruction, said. “We hosted a parent presentation that went very in-depth about Narcan. I do wish more parents knew that they could purchase Narcan over the counter; it’s always a what if situation.”  

 Narcan is regionally available at Kaiser Hospital, local pharmacies such as Rite Aid, CVS, and Walgreens and retails for $44.99. By being aware and conscious of the effects that Narcan can provide during a high-risk overdose situation.

“I’d definitely consider carrying it with me. It’s such a scary thing that can happen at any moment,” sophomore Alita Kanu said. “It’s nice to know that I can buy something that could possibly help save someone’s life.”

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About the Contributor
Luciana Martin
Luciana Martin, Media Manager
Luciana Martin Is a senior at RCHS , this is her second year in journalism and her first year managing media and photography for The Cat’s Eye. When she Isn’t working on writing articles Martin enjoys collect new records for her collection and learning her favorite songs on her guitar. Martins favorite thing about journalism is getting to elaborate on subjects she finds interesting and learning about others' experiences in life and seeing different perspectives on topics. What do you plan to do after High School? After Highschool Luciana plans on majoring in journalism , specifically entertainment and music journalism with a minor in music mainly focusing in sound technician. What is your Zodiac sign? Luciana is a Gemini with a moon in Leo and Sagittarius rising sign. Luciana does believe that traits of the zodiac do effect aspects of our personalties types in some ways.

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