It’s a first for the RCMP.
Some will now be required to administer a drug to counter overdoses.
In a leaked memo to CKNW news, it’s been learned Surrey RCMP is partnering with Fraser Health and the BC Centre for Disease Control to train and outfit 40 officers in the proper use of Narcan, used to reverse the effects of opioids.
The memo says ”the officers will be carrying the drug, and will use it as necessary to inject with into patients who are overdosing.’
It further warns “fentanyl in any form should not be handled by first responders, as the drug can be absorbed through skin contact.”
This move may not sit well with paramedics, who have already expressed concern with firefighters delivering some medical care when they are called out.
Fentanyl related fatal overdoses are on the rise in Metro Vancouver
In April, a six month long investigation led by the Vancouver Police Organized Crime Section resulted in a drug bust of 23,000 fentanyl pills, among other illegal contraband. This past summer, there were at least four fatal overdoses, including a couple from North Vancouver who were found in their home, and a 17-year-old boy from Burnaby.
Fentanyl comes in many forms as a prescription:
- Skin patch
- A film that dissolves in your mouth
- Nasal spray
- or by IV (intravenous)
Fentanyl has been found in street drugs, such as:
- Crystal Methamphetamine
- Imitation painkillers, such as “Oxy 80’s”