Free overdose prevention training class offered in Philadelphia

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- More people in the community are learning how to administer Naloxone, the drug that can reverse an opioid overdose.

Just a few weeks ago, the surgeon general called on more Americans to carry this life-saving medication.

As the opioid epidemic gets worse, more people in our area are answering that call.

It was a live step-by-step demonstration to a packed house inside Philadelphia's Department of Behavioral Health to show lay people how to assess someone for a drug overdose and how to administer Naloxone, or Narcan.

"You administer it into one nostril like so," said instructor Leonia Johnson.

The intranasal spray works to temporarily block opioids and using it quickly can mean the difference between life and death in an overdose situation.

Ramon Cruz from Kensington says he was saved three times by Narcan. He struggled with addiction for 25 years and he's grateful for the people who saved him. He's now been drug-free for three years and gives back to the community and his family.

"Today I am a father, a brother, and a son to my mother today," he said.

Everyone leaving received a prescription or an emergency overdose kit with the medication. The course also goes over signs and symptoms and next steps.

Many take the class for personal reasons or because they're out in the community and recognize the need.

"You can see it's a problem so I definitely think it's good to be prepared for anybody," says Michelle Montalbano of Glenside, Pennsylvania.

Terrell Green, who works at the Mazzoni Center added, " What I could sense in the room is it removed the fear that some people have about helping someone in that situation."

The Overdose Prevention Training is free. It's offered the third Wednesday of every month.

To register for a future class, visit:
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