Addiction is an issue many families in Manatee County face, and one organization has orchestrated several events to educate the public on opioids with the goal of saving lives.
Drug Free Manatee is hosting a series of opioid training events in February that are appropriate for first responders, law enforcement, medical professionals and community members, according to a news release from Drug Free Manatee.
The events are designed to save lives and educate attendees on the use of naloxone, a drug that can reverse the effects of an opioid overdose. Also discussed will be state laws on overdose response, such as Florida’s Good Samaritan Act, a law that protects a person who reports an overdose by calling 911 from being charged with possession.
The trainings will be held at the Bradenton Downtown Central Library, located at 1301 Barcarotta Blvd. W., on Feb. 15, from 3 to 5 p.m.; Feb. 16 from 9 to 11 a.m.; and Feb. 17 from 10 a.m. to noon. Amanda Muller, overdose prevention coordinator, from the state Department of Children and Families will conduct the training.
A separate naloxone training session will be held for residents concerned about a loved one possibly overdosing. The event will take place on Feb. 16 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Bradenton Baptist Church, located at 1305 43rd St. W. Naloxone is available without a prescription at CVS pharmacies in Manatee County.
“We are excited to be hosting this training that highlights naloxone as a short-term response in order to save lives,” said Sharon Kramer, executive director of Drug Free Manatee. “This is just one piece of a larger strategy to prevent substance-use disorders. In addition, we are lobbying for universal prevention programs in schools and better access to treatment for those suffering from the disease of addiction.”