In many communities across Canada, opioids are becoming an issue officials are struggling to handle. The narcotics have resulted in a number of overdoses. Here in Weyburn, the Weyburn Police Service is looking to minimize the risks in our community.
The police force has a strategy for handling overdose calls. Deputy Chief Rod Stafford explained the first step is determining if it is an actual overdose situation, and then getting assistance from EMS. Then, medical treatment can begin.
To alleviate situations where someone may be worried about being arrested due to possession of illegal drugs when calling for help with a friend who is possibly overdosing, or even themselves, Stafford stated recent legislation was passed to remove the fear of arrest.
“If somebody is worried about themselves having overdosed, or somebody else having overdosed when they call the police, they’re not going to be in trouble if there's illegal drugs present when the police get there,” Stafford said.
With opioids becoming an increasingly common drug in overdose situations, thanks to drugs like fentanyl, members of the Weyburn Police Service have been equipped with naloxone, d trained in its use. Also known as Narcan, the medication blocks the effects of opioids, in particular during an overdose situation.
“We haven’t had to use it yet, fortunately, but it is a tool available to us,” Stafford commented.