A new study finds bystanders equipped with the opioid overdose antidote naloxone, along with a smartphone app, can reverse a heroin overdose.
Researchers at Bar Ilan University in Israel and Drexel University in Philadelphia enrolled 200 volunteers who agreed to be paged if a person overdosed near them. The app was activated by volunteers witnessing an overdose to signal other nearby volunteers. The volunteers agreed to administer naloxone, guided by a smartphone app with videos and other resources, the researchers report in eClinical Medicine.
Over the course of one year, just over one-third of the volunteers responded to an overdose. In 60% of cases, they beat emergency responder teams, and had already administered naloxone more than five minutes before the EMTs arrived, The Times of Israel reports.
U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams issued a national advisory in 2018 urging more Americans to carry and become familiar with how to administer naloxone. The call was not widely met, the article notes.
How to Use Naloxone to Stop Opioid Overdose and Save Lives
In the event of an opioid overdose (including heroin and prescribed pain medications), naloxone can reverse an overdose and save a life.