Phone: (561) 299-0405 Email: info@farronline.org

A Mother’s Act: Advocating for Increased Naloxone Access

February 2015

Dear Floridians​:

“A Mother’s Act” is a grassroots coalition of healthcare professionals, treatment providers, advocates, educators, family members, and friends who support increased access to naloxone, the antidote to an opioid overdose, in Florida.

Opioid overdose can occur, accidentally, from medical use of prescription opioid pain relievers, non-medical use of prescription opioids, and heroin use.

Drug overdose deaths are now the leading cause of injury death nationwide.[1]  In 2013, approximately 16,000 people in the United States died from overdoses involving prescription opioids.[2]  That same year over 1,900 Floridians died with at least one prescription drug listed as a cause of death, and the majority involved opioids.3  In addition, heroin deaths in Florida increased by nearly 80% from 2012 to 2013.[3]

Naloxone is a prescription medication that was approved by the FDA in 1971.  Traditionally, it has been used in hospitals and by emergency medical services (EMS), but it can also be administered effectively by laypersons. Naloxone temporarily blocks the effects of opioids until EMS arrives.  It is not a controlled substance and has no potential for abuse.  In addition, research shows that by providing naloxone, community programs can begin to form relationships with people struggling with drug use which may lead to other benefits like health screenings, counseling and drug treatment.[4] However, the medication is not often available when needed in Florida due to barriers to access.

A Mother’s Act calls on all Floridians to work together to increase opportunities for opioid overdose prevention and access to naloxone by advocating for the following key principles:

  • Third party prescription authorization for first responders (such as law enforcement officers and emergency medical technicians), family members, friends and others who may be in a position to assist someone at risk of experiencing an opioid overdose;
  • Access to all generic and proprietary naloxone delivery methods;
  • Increased opportunities for opioid overdose prevention education via community organizations and substance abuse treatment centers; and
  • Prescriber, pharmacist, and layperson administrator liability protections.

We look forward to you joining us in this life-saving cause.  Naloxone, alone, is not the solution to our state’s opioid overdose problem, but it is an important tool which we are failing to utilize – for each time it’s prescribed, dispensed, or administered, we are presented with a critical opportunity to provide education, intervention, treatment, and the possibility of long-term recovery.  Help us give life, so that we may inspire hope.

The following is the link to the bill we are trying to get passed:

https://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2015/0758

 

 

Sincerely,

“A Mother’s Act” Signature Page

 Kelly M. Corredor

President & CEO, The Skeeterhawk Experiment, Inc.

Jacksonville, FL

 

Julia Negron 

Lead Organizer, Suncoast Harm Reduction Project (a project of A New PATH)

Board Member, Floridians For Recovery

Venice, FL

 

Lisa Brandy

President & Founder, Brandi’s Wish Foundation

Sarasota, FL

 

 

Signatures of additional supporters will be added on a “rolling” basis through the month of February.

 

 

 

 

 

[1] Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Web-based Injury Statistics Query and Reporting System (WISQARS) [online]. (2014) Available from URL: http://www.cdc.gov/injury/wisqars/fatal.html​.

[2] C​DC. Prescription Drug Overdose in the United States: Fact Sheet.  Available at http://www.cdc.gov/homeandrecreationalsafety/overdose/facts.html​.  Accessed on December 4, 2014. 3 FLDE. Drugs Identified in Deceased Persons by Florida Medical Examiners, 2013 Annual Report.

[3] ​ Id.

[4] Karen H. Seal et al., Naloxone Distribution and Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation·Training for Injection Drug Users to Prevent Heroin Overdose Death: A Pilot Intervention Study, 82(2) Journal of Urban Health 303–311 (2005).