Bexar County Judge Peter Sakai and Sheriff Javier Salazar announced on Friday the purchase of a 20-month supply of naloxone for use by the Bexar County Sheriff’s Office. The drug, also commonly known as Narcan, can reverse opioid overdoses.
Salazar said Narcan had become an essential part of his deputies’ tool kit in the past year, despite initially being seen as a novelty item.
“Just in 2022 alone, 51 of our patrol deputies saved lives by administering Narcan,” he said.
Sakai said the county used $47,000 from a $2.2 million pool the county received as part of a settlement with opioid manufacturers and distributors to purchase 1,992 doses of Narcan for sheriff’s deputies.
He explained why deputies needed to be equipped with the drug.
“By treating overdoses quickly, it becomes the first step in opening a door to treatment, recovery, and ultimately connection to resources,” Sakai said. “Providing a starting point for what is often long-term care.”
Dr. Andrea Guerrero-Guajardo, the director of Preventative Health and Environmental Services at Bexar County, said she believed it was worth investing in Narcan.
“Harm reduction interventions have proven to save lives and give people with this disease the opportunity to live and potentially seek recovery,” she said. “People are more than five times more likely to seek treatment when they encounter harm-reduction interventions than just by abstinence alone.”
Narcan has become increasingly vital to local communities in Texas in recent years; the state ranks in the top 20 for fentanyl overdoses.