Police agencies report over 500 saves using Narcan provided by Attorney General's Office

August 1, 2018

(AUGUSTA) Maine Attorney General Janet T. Mills has announced that police agencies receiving Narcan, the opioid overdose reversing drug, have utilized it 504 times since the Attorney General's Office began making it available at no cost to the agencies. The first doses of Narcan were delivered in June 2016 and has been provided to 84 agencies across Maine.

"This is another grim milestone in our state's fight against opioids," said Attorney General Mills. "While it is critical that we turn the tide against the ever-rising number of overdose deaths, we can and should be doing more to prevent and treat substance use disorder in Maine. I proposed a ten-point plan in January to address Maine's opiate epidemic. Some recent actions have been taken by the Legislature to address the issue, like funding a hub and spoke treatment model, but we must do more."

Attorney General Mills has been providing Narcan, also known by the generic term Naloxone, to law enforcement agencies using funds made available through settlements with pharmaceutical manufacturers. Attorney General Mills, as the State's chief law enforcement officer, is empowered to provide the doses to other law enforcement agencies. When agreeing to accept the Narcan from the Attorney General's Office, law enforcement agencies must certify that their officers are trained to administer it. The agencies are also asked to report back when they successfully use the doses, but this figure does not reflect all of the Narcan administered in the state.

"Seconds count when an officer arrives on an overdose scene and there is no reason a person should die because a responding officer did not have this simple tool available," said Attorney General Mills. "Now we need to supplement these emergency measures with medication assisted treatment and with recovery coaches available at emergency rooms so we can help people turn their lives around."