Natick 180 encourages community members to educate themselves, family members, friends and neighbors about how they help save a life.
Here are a few tips and resources to reduce the risk of a fatal overdose:
1. Assume that all street drugs contain fentanyl.
Fentanyl is a powerful opioid that can be lethal in very small amounts.
2. Never use alone.
And make a plan with a friend about what to do if you witness an overdose. The Good Samaritan Law provides immunity from prosecution of a controlled substance if a person seeks medical assistance for someone experiencing a drug-related overdose. (See M.G.L. ch.94c 344a.)
3. If you are at risk of witnessing or experiencing an opioid overdose, make sure to have Narcan (a.k.a. Naloxone) handy, a nasal spray that can reverse an opioid overdose.
You might be at high risk of witnessing or experiencing an overdose if you are in recovery, are actively using opioids or are the family member or close friend of someone with a history of opioid use disorder. Narcan can be obtained for free from:
The Natick Health Department at Natick Town Hall, 13 E. Central Street (2nd floor). Please call 508-647-6460 to make a confidential appointment.
Program RISE at Justice Resource Institute (JRI), 1 Grant Street (Suite 100), Framingham. Call 508-935-2960 or walk-in (Mon & Fri 8:30 AM-3:30 PM; Tues-Thurs 8:30 AM-6:30 PM)
Learn to Cope Meetings, Monday – Thursday evenings from 7:00-8:30 PM. Meetings are held in English and Spanish. For more information, visit www.learn2cope.org.
Additionally, anyone in the general public can request Narcan at local pharmacies (prescription co-pays apply). Call ahead of time to make sure that the pharmacy has Narcan in stock and that a pharmacist can train you when you pick it up.
4. Do not mix substances.
Mixing opioids with substances such as alcohol, benzodiazepines (such as Xanax, Klonopin and Valium), or cocaine increases risk of overdose.
5. Use less after any period of abstinence or decreased use.
Individuals leaving treatment, hospitalization or incarceration can be at high risk of overdose. Even a few days away could lower your tolerance.
6. When using, do not lock doors behind you.
Locked doors can prevent help from getting to you quickly.
7. Check-in with someone who is struggling with addiction by phone or text.
Share information with them about how to keep themselves safe, and let them know that you care about them.
8. Learn more about effective ways to save a life.