Forth Valley police in trial over new spray which reverses drug overdoses

Forth Valley police officers have been part of a pilot project to learn how to administer a spray which reverses an opioid-related drug overdose.

By Allan Crow
Thursday, 11th March 2021, 12:30 pm

Naloxone will be worn on the utility belts of police who take part in the training for a six-month assessment of its effectiveness.

The pilot was approved last year as part of the national public health approach to tackling the impact of drugs.

Officers from Falkirk have been trained in how to carry and administer the spray which is intended as a first aid response to preserve life.

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Picture, John Devlin.

They also carry after-care cards which are issued whenever police administer the nasal prior to ambulance attendance.

The spray was used within hours in an incident in Glasgow.

Gary Ritchie, assistant chief constable and head of drug strategy for Police Scotland, said: “Clearly operational officers recognise that naloxone is a safe, simple way to help people who may be dying from an overdose and are willing to be involved in a pilot to see how beneficial it is to have police officers carrying it more widely.

“This first administration is an early indication of the potential value that police carrying Naloxone could have in helping people who use drugs, as well as their families, friends and communities. However, the test of change has only just begun and we will continue to monitor and assess the value over the next six months. This will take place with the support of an external team of academics at Edinburgh Napier University who will independently evaluate the entire process.”

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