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Nashua Weighs Whether To Put Overdose Drug Narcan in Schools

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Paige Sutherland/NHPR
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Earlier this month more than 4,500 Narcan kits were made available at no cost at community health centers across the state.

Nashua is considering whether to make the overdose reversal drug naloxone, better known as Narcan, available in schools. Currently the school district is weighing liability concerns, the cost and how much training would be needed before moving forward.

This comes just months after the state passed legislation expanding access to Narcan to family and friends, care givers and even addicts. Last year alone Narcan, which can reverse the effects of an opioid overdose, was used more than 1,900 times statewide.

Nashua Board of Education President George Farrington said the issue came up at last week's board meeting. Although the district doesn’t face an opioid crisis, he says it can’t hurt to have the medication on hand. 

“This is just a precautionary thing, just like if we put the defibrillators in or epi-pens or other things," he said. "This is just preparing for what we hope is an eventuality that will never occur." According to recent data, so far this year in Nashua there has been 142 overdoses, 16 of which were fatal.

Narcan is available in schools at several districts in Massachusetts as well as all public high schools and middle schools in Rhode Island.

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