Treating Opioid Overdose, on the Ground

Odyssey House President Dr. Peter Provet discusses the role treatment providers can take in expanding access to naloxone training in response to a recent article (“Surgeon General Urges Americans to Carry Drug That Stops Opioid Overdoses,” news, April 6) in The New York Times.

To the Editor:

The surgeon general’s aggressive and necessary initiative to make naloxone more available to the families and friends of people at risk of an opioid overdose will assuredly save lives. Empowering drug treatment agencies, with their experience and expertise, to play a leadership role in bringing naloxone training to the business world takes this call to action a crucial step further.

Smart business leaders are recognizing that addiction is an equal-opportunity destroyer that affects their employees and their families.

Ignoring potential stigma, business leaders understand that their employees are susceptible to witnessing an overdose at work, at home or in public places. By inviting agencies like ours to train them and their staff members in administering overdose reversal medication, they are acknowledging that this pernicious epidemic can be defeated.

Dr. Provet’s “Letter to the Editor” was one of several commenting on The New York Times’s latest opioid epidemic coverage. Click here to read additional letters offering remarks from pain management and public health perspectives.