Councilwoman King Sweeney Joins With Merrick Fire Department to Host Life-Saving Narcan Program

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Issued by: Council Member Erin King Sweeney

Town of Hempstead Councilwoman Erin King Sweeney, in conjunction with the Merrick Fire Department, will host a Narcan Training Session at the Merrick Golf Course Conference Room at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, February 13th. The training, which is being run by Councilman Anthony D’Esposito, an NYPD Detective and Ex-Chief of the Island Park Fire Department, is a continuation of the councilman’s extremely successful Save-A-Life Program.

“Opioid abuse is on the rise in Nassau County and people of all ages and from all walks of life are dying from drug overdoses,” said Councilwoman King Sweeney. “We want to do everything within our power to help save these lives so that the boys and girls and men and women who are overdosing have a second chance at life.”

Narcan kits can quickly reverse the effects of a narcotic overdose and will combat opioid deaths. The training includes identifying an overdose victim, administering the Narcan kit, and contacting emergency officials. By supplying communities with this information and Narcan kits, the town is taking crucial steps toward combating fatal overdoses. The 1,000th Narcan kit was distributed by the Town in January.

The 1,000 training kits have been distributed to emergency services personnel, community members and even Hempstead Town public safety officers, bay constables and parks and recreation staff. Hempstead Town staff members have specialized qualifications and experience in dealing with medical emergencies through its Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) squad. The unit, based at the town’s oceanfront beaches, includes EMTs and advanced paramedics who respond to a host of safety and medical calls at the township’s beaches. These professionals can deal with issues such as heroin overdoses, and they also have the training and credentials to interact with local hospitals and ambulance corps. In 2016, Town Lifeguards used Narcan to revive an overdose victim.

“By training those who are on the front lines, we can help beat the scourge of heroin and other opioids and save the lives of those who are battling this terrible affliction,” noted D’Esposito.

“This is such a great program that unfortunately meets a real need here in the Town of Hempstead. I truly appreciate Councilman D’Esposito’s efforts and I am grateful for the opportunity to bring this lifesaving training to my council district,” said Councilwoman King Sweeney. “I would also like to acknowledge the Merrick Fire Department for jumping on board and co-sponsoring this event. They are on the front lines every day and see what the drug epidemic is doing to our communities.”

According to published reports, opioid overdose deaths were at an all-time high in 2016 on Long Island, with 190 opioid deaths in Nassau County alone. Emergency responders on Long Island say they saved more than 700 overdose victims with Narcan in 2016.

“I am looking forward to holding more of these training sessions throughout my district. I hope that with more education and by spreading the word of the dangers of drug abuse, we can eliminate the need for this type of program,” concluded King Sweeney.

The Narcan Training Session will be held at the Merrick Golf Course Conference Room, 2550 Clubhouse Road, Merrick at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, February 13, 2018.