NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – Opioid addiction in Western Massachusetts is rising at an alarming rate and people are dying from overdoses.
The drug Narcan can bring someone back to life who overdoses on opioids. Tapestry Health wants to make this drug available to the people who need it most.
“What happens is they can come to us on a walk in bases and go through a training that we have right on site and when it’s done, they can take a kit home with them, in case they witness an overdose,” said Liz Whynott, Director of the needle exchange program at Tapestry Health in Northampton.
Tapestry Health has reported nearly 500 lives have been saved because of the drug Narcan and that number could be greater.
Some Western Massachusetts residents are worried the drug could do more bad than good.
“Obviously it could save a life and there is a clear pattern of overdosing that’s going on in this valley and I think we’re looking for solutions. I would have to say that I am a bit ambivalent.” Springfield resident Julie told 22News.
Many emergency responders carry Narcan and the Good Samaritan law protects people from drug possession charges, if they report an overdose.
Whynott says they hope to make Narcan more readily available across the state. Tapestry Health is currently holding Narcan training sessions in several western Massachusetts communities.