Chico Police Take Preemptive Measures in Battling Opioid Crisis

— Officers Issued Emergency Medical Nasal Naloxone —

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Chico, CA – The Chico Police Department is taking preemptive measures in addressing the opioid crisis facing Butte County, by outfitting law enforcement personnel with emergency medical nasal   Naloxone (Narcan). As of Monday, February 11, 2018, the department deployed the use of a total of 41 Naloxone kits to be utilized by Patrol Officers, Detectives, members of the Butte Interagency Narcotics Task Force (BINTF), Park Rangers and Community Service Officers. In addition, one Naloxone kit is also available in the Police Department intake/holding area and one in the Evidence Department.

All sworn members of the department, Community Service Officers, Park Rangers and those who may have contact with an individual affected by opioid usage and/or overdose, have completed a training certification course, for proper use of the Naloxone kits.

At no cost to the Chico Police Department or the City of Chico, the addition of the Naloxone treatment kits is possible through Butte County Public Health. The agency recently received funds through a California Department of Public Health (CDPH) Safe and Active Communities Branch non-competitive grant. Funds were made available to all California counties through California Senate Bill 833 to establish a Naloxone Grant Program for a one-time distribution of start-up doses of nasal Naloxone for use by local community partners.

Per Sierra Sacramento Valley EMS, the approved authority under which Chico Police officers and personnel received training and certification for Naloxone administration, there were 1,925 opioid-related deaths in California in 2016. In 2017, Butte County first responders administered Naloxone in the field to 191 patients during 911 emergency calls.

“Opioid related overdoses and deaths are becoming an all too common occurrence in our communities. The danger of accidental overdose to our public safety officials has also increased due to powerful and easily ingested illicit substances,” said Police Chief Michael O’Brien.

As part of the grant, Butte County received 538 doses (269 kits) for a total value of $20,200 dollars. Chico Police Department’s allotment of 41 Naloxone kits is valued at $3,075 dollars.

Should Chico Police Department personnel encounter an incident in which Naloxone is administered to reverse an overdose, an incident report and corresponding information will be submitted to Butte County Public Health, to be used for a final report for CDPH. Butte County now joins numerous California counties already utilizing Naloxone distribution programs in efforts to reduce the number of opioid-related deaths.

“Issuing Naloxone as a treatment option provides our officers with a simple yet effective tool to combat the effects of an opioid related overdose.  We are pleased to partner with the Butte County Department of Public Health on this important effort, as I believe it will save lives,” explains Chief O’Brien.

For more information and opioid statistics for Butte County and California, visit the California Opioid Dashboard www.cdph.ca.gov/opioiddashboard.

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About Butte County Public Health: The Butte County Public Health Department (BCPHD) runs over 50 programs serving: children, mothers, families, adults, small businesses, animals and the environment. BCPHD is committed to promoting healthy behaviors and resources, preventing illness and protecting the health of residents and visitors in Butte County. As a nationally accredited health department, they are involved in a variety of community-based activities that engage residents in the planning, evaluation and implementation of health improvements in the community.

*Interview opportunities with Chico Police Commander Billy Aldridge and Butte County Public Health Epidemiologist, Mr. Sandy Henley, are available Thursday, February 15, 2018 between 10AM – 11AM at the Chico Police Department, 1460 Humboldt Road, Chico, CA 95928.

Anonymous tips and information can be submitted to the Chico Police Department through our Crime Tip-line at 530.896.8477. Tipsters can also submit anonymous information via the Chico Police Department mobile app.

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