LEONARDTOWN, MD (July 14, 2015) – The St. Mary’s County Health Department is offering naloxone training to community members who may be able to save the life of someone experiencing breathing problems from opioid overdose. These classes are provided through Maryland’s Overdose Response Program.
Naloxone is a prescription medication that is used to reverse an opioid overdose. Opioids include heroin and prescription pain medications such as hydrocodone, methadone, morphine, and oxycodone.
“Heroin and prescription opioid overdose deaths are devastating to our community,” said Jenna Mulliken, local health improvement coordinator at St. Mary’s County Health Department. “Many of these deaths can be prevented by improving practices to prevent opioid addiction, increasing access to treatment services, and increasing use of naloxone for suspected overdoses. The Overdose Response Program is expanding use of naloxone by training community members to properly use this potentially life-saving medication.” 
Individuals who successfully complete the two-hour training curriculum will receive a certificate allowing them to obtain and have filled a prescription for naloxone. The training is meant for adults who are more likely to be in a setting where they could help someone experiencing opioid overdose when emergency medical services are not immediately available. This could include concerned parents, caregivers, and others whose social, occupational, volunteer, or family experience might lead to a situation where they could help restore the breathing of someone who has overdosed on opioids.

Participants in the training will learn how to recognize the signs and symptoms of opioid overdose, the importance of calling 9-1-1 in medical emergencies, as well as how to administer naloxone and care for someone until emergency help arrives.
This program is free; however, registration is required. Classes have been scheduled for the following dates and times: •July 20 from 9:30 – 11:30 a.m. at the St. Mary’s County Health Department
•July 20 from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. at the Beacon of Hope in Lexington Park
•July 23 from 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. at the St. Mary’s County Health Department
To learn more about the Overdose Response Program and to register for a class, please visit www.smchd.org/overdose.
For further information about naloxone training, please contact Jenna Mulliken at jenna.mulliken@maryland.gov or at 301-475-4323.