Harm-reduction tools save lives 

ELLSWORTHDrug-related deaths in Maine are on the rise. According to the Maine CDC, the number of heroin-related fatalities almost quadrupled from 2002 to 2013 and the numbers continue to climb. The number of overdose deaths varies from year to year, with most being attributed to opioids such as heroin, fentanyl and oxycodone.  

To minimize drug-related deaths, Healthy Acadia is offering two methods of harm reduction that can be obtained during the COVID-19 pandemic.   

Fentanyl, a powerful synthetic opioid analgesic, is 50100 times more potent than morphine and can be lethal.  Healthy Acadia can provide fentanyl test strips so that they may test a substance to see if fentanyl is present.  

NARCAN®, a medication used to block the effects of opioids, is another tool. When someone is overdosing, the receptors in their brain that tell them to breathe are blocked by the opioid. When administered to someone who is overdosing, it removes the block on those receptors, signaling the body to breathe.   

Healthy Acadia is offering fentanyl test strips and NARCAN® at no cost. To receive them complete Healthy Acadia’s online form https://forms.gle/uAPF1h8EkZLfef3K7. 

For information, contact Beth Alteri at [email protected] or (207) 460-2312. 

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