Area counties receive grants and nalaxone kits

First responders in three area counties were among those who were awarded $127,000 in nalaxone kits, which are used to counteract drug overdoses. The Indiana State Department of Health announced the awards Wednesday. Officials say the kits will go to 95 first responder agencies serving 34 rural counties. They add that the funding will be used to provide 3,388 naloxone kits, train first responders on usage and “expand referrals to appropriate treatment and recovery communities.”

Jackson, Jennings and Decatur counties are all receiving grants. Officials say the grants were made possible through a four-year, $3.2 million Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration grant awarded to ISDH in October of 2017. They are being made available to rural counties with higher emergency room visits for overdoses, a greater number of opioid prescriptions and a lower reported use of naloxone by first responders.

The rural grants are the latest work of the ISDH naloxone distribution program, which has granted more than 13,700 naloxone kits to local health departments to date. Hoosiers in need of naloxone can visit to find locations that carry the medication.