CAPITAL REGION, N.Y. (NEWS10) — As the drug crisis grew during the pandemic, first responders found themselves turning to the overdose drug naloxone more often. But there is a shortage of this lifesaver in parts of the country.
Local organizations in the Capital Region say it would be frightening not to have Naloxone and worse outcomes would occur.
“We had an overdose in the alley last week on Friday. Someone came to the door and we were able to give them a kit. The staff went out to bring more kits, and we were able to revive the person,” said Natalie Lindop-Braun.
A manufacturing issue stopped Pfizer’s production of single-dose injectable Naloxone in April. They have been working with the FDA to solve.
Pfizer said it doesn’t expect any more single-dose vials of naloxone to be available until the fall, and it may not be back to uninterrupted levels until February 2022.
Lindop-Braun is the Associate Director of Homeless Services at Joseph’s House and Shelter in Troy. She says they have a supply for now but also feels it’s only a matter of time before the national shortage hits home.
“We have heard that the shortage could be coming, but right now we are working with Project Safe Point, and Catholic Charities. They have been doing a wonderful job keeping us well enough stocked,” said Lindop-Braun.
Columbia County Sheriff David Bartlett said they use naloxone regularly as the drug crisis continues.
“For Columbia County, we have not had any issues with obtaining Narcan,” said Sheriff Bartlett.
But he points to another area in upstate New York that has seen the drug problem firsthand. Fulton County has had 88 overdoses this year alone and 11% have been fatal.
“Narcan is something we need more than ever — even before COVID. It’s been extremely valuable to have on the streets, because at the end of the day, you’re saving someone’s loved ones,” said Sheriff Bartlett.
Sheriff Bartlett says more partnerships are to come throughout the Capital Region when it comes to use of naloxone.