SALT LAKE CITY – Salt Lake City Police used Naloxone for the first time to save a woman’s life. Officers found themselves at the right place at the right time Wednesday evening in the Rio Grande District in Salt Lake City.
“They were alerted to a 24-year-old female who was unconscious in the median; she had shallow breathing, kind of a purple face,” said Detective Cody Lougy of the Salt Lake City Police Department.
They were all signs of a heroin overdose. Officers quickly administered Naloxone, a drug that reverses the effects of opioids.
“Within a minute, this person was conscious, she was breathing better," Lougy said.
Officers credit training they received on administering the life-saving drug just two weeks ago.
“It saved her life,” Lougy said.
With more Utah law enforcement agencies arming themselves with the medication, their ultimate goal is to curb opioid overdose deaths.
“Right now, we’re fourth in the country in terms of drug-related deaths,” said Eric Barnhart, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI's Salt Lake City Field Office.
The FBI is highlighting these efforts as part of “Opioid Awareness Week.” Officials say there were 640-plus drug-related deaths in 2014. That’s due in large part to the increasing use of opioids other than heroin, such as pain medication.
“If you have this stuff in your medicine cabinet and you no longer need it, don't risk becoming your household's drug dealer,” Barnhart said.
Right now, 30-40 officers have been trained to administer Naloxone. Within the coming weeks, the Salt Lake City Police Department plans to train all of its first responders to administer Naloxone.