County hears plan to deal with overdoses

How the Illinois Department of Public Health is battling the ongoing opioid epidemic in the southern half of the state was a topic of discussion at the Oct. 6 Randolph County Board of Commissioners meeting.

Randolph County Health Department Interim Director Stephanie Martin started off by stating that IDPH Director Nirav D. Shah had announced a standing order for naloxone.

Naloxone is an opioid overdose reversal drug, which is also known by the brand name Narcan.

Martin explained that southern Illinois has seen a large increase in opioid overdoses, from both prescription medications and heroin. She added that reported overdose deaths from 2010 to 2016 were up 511 percent.

“It started with a small number and just keeps getting bigger,” she said. “But for each overdose death, there are several that were treated and recovered.”

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