In order to save their remaining limited supply for their deputies, the Monroe County Sheriff Department will no longer use the overdose remedy drug Naloxone on EMS calls.
Deputies were instructed to use the nasal spray version of the drug only if they or other emergency public safety officials are exposed to fentanyl, a drug that can be mixed with other opioids and is 50 to 100 times more potent than heroin.
"I hope this sheds light on how serious this issue is," Monroe County Sheriff Brad Swain said Tuesday. "I have to make the hard choice of protecting my officers and the public. We are at the point now where the safety of my officers is paramount to people who are self-destructive."
Naloxone, the generic name for the prescription drug Narcan, is a medication that is used by medical professionals to stop the overdose effects of opioids before a drug user dies.
"Given the incidents of officers in life-threatening situations, due to exposure to fentanyl, keep the remaining units available for use in such cases we may encounter in which a deputy or other public safety professional may be in distress, " Sheriff Brad Swain said in an email to his deputies Monday evening.
The sheriff department has reached out to three different sources to provide the nasal spray version versus the injection. Currently, Sheriff Swain stated that the department is down to one naloxone kit per officer.