(WKBN) – Having naloxone can mean the difference between life and death in drug overdose. Local agencies are helping deliver the drug in a new way, in addition to just distributing it.
Tony Averette drops anchor to save a life. He installed a “Naloxbox” at the Comfort Suites in Liberty on Friday. It contains two doses of naloxone, which can reverse the effects of drug overdose.
“Fortunately, we’ve never seen an overdose at this hotel, but just in case we do, we want the opportunity to save a life,” said Lisa McAllister, General Manager of Comfort Suites.
The box is installed in the break room. Staff will watch a training video on how to administer the medication, just in case. This is a pilot program between agencies in Mahoning and Trumbull counties, as well as the Ohio Hotels and Lodging Association.
“It was an important topic, something that we have to address to help support hotels, to support hotel guests who were going through these things,” said Lauren Thorp, director of recovery programs for TCMHRB.
Fourteen Naloxboxes are ready to use. They are installed in central locations, so that the opioid reversal medication can be found easily, instead of being in a drawer.
The drug can be a lifeline.
“We thought it was a great idea because the opioid crisis in this region is so severe,” McAllister said.
Trumbull County continues to be in the top 10 overdoses in the state. There are 28 counties in Ohio that account for 80% of overdoses, and Trumbull County is one of them.
The Naloxbox is ready at Comfort Suites, providing access to overdose response tools.
“So it is very early. This is our first. But ultimately, we really hope every hotel in the state gets one, ”Thorp said.
Naloxone does not need to be refrigerated and has a shelf life of two years.