Quick thinking by medical staff very likely saved a Pierre man’s life. If not for a law passed a couple years ago the ending could have been much different.

Attorney General Marty Jackley points to a recently passed law by the South Dakota Legislature in which First Responders can inject an antidote into a person who has overdosed on certain narcotic drugs. In a press release, Attorney General Marty Jackley and Pierre Police Chief Dave Panzer confirmed a life was saved with the use of Narcan Monday night in Pierre.

As Emergency Responders arrived at a Pierre residence where CPR was being administered to an unresponsive male, Emergency Responders administered a dose of Narcan, which successfully resuscitated the individual. The individual was then transported to a local hospital for further medical treatment.

“Equipping emergency responders and law enforcement personnel with Narcan provides a valuable tool to deal with opioid and heroin overdoses,” said Jackley. “Emergency responders are faced with difficult work each day and having Narcan readily available will help them to save more lives.”

“It is imperative that if a drug overdose is suspected that those involved contact law enforcement immediately. The ability to administer Narcan could make the difference between life and death,” said Chief Panzer.

The Attorney General’s Office sponsored legislation in 2015 that would enable all first responders to carry naloxone, a medicine to reverse the effects of opioid overdoses. Having naloxone available is a costeffective way to save lives especially to our rural first responders. Attorney General Jackley has authorized the use of available drug control funds to assist units of local government and first responders with the purchase of the Narcan agent.

South Dakota suffered 32 accidental drug overdose deaths in 2013, 42 in 2014 and 41 in 2015, several of which heroin was a contributing factor.

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