Fire/EMS and Law Enforcement Partner to Respond to Opioid Overdoses
Opioid and heroin related overdose deaths have risen nearly 500% in Milwaukee County since 2005. In fact, the Milwaukee County Medical Examiners Office is projecting nearly 400 deaths will be related to overdoses of those substances in Milwaukee County during 2017.
North Shore Fire/Rescue EMS Providers have experienced the increase first-hand in all seven communities protected by the Department.
Heroin and opioid overdoses can quickly lead to unconsciousness and stop a person's breathing. The only way to reverse this condition is through the administration of Narcan. Over the past few months, North Shore Fire/Rescue has been working with the seven North Shore Police Departments to deploy Narcan via police officers on patrol. Police officers are often times first on scene of overdoses based on the joint law enforcement and fire/rescue response to overdoses and can administer Narcan quickly, thus improving survivability rates of overdose victims. Officers also carry Narcan for their own safety. Officers across the Country have been accidently exposed to deadly doses of opioids as part of their investigations of a crime and have needed to be revived using Narcan.
The deployment of Narcan with law enforcement is a joint initiative of the police departments, North Shore Fire/Rescue and Milwaukee County EMS.