St Louis County Executive Page Announces New Steps in County’s Opioid Action Plan

ST. LOUIS COUNTY, MO (STL.News) Monday, County Executive Sam Page joined the Department of Public Health to announce a newest initiative in the County’s Opioid Action Plan to increase availability of naloxone (commonly distributed under the brand name Narcan®) to the public. Naloxone will be available free of charge to the public and community groups at the John C. Murphy Health Center during regular business hours.

“Our entire region has been deeply affected by the opioid epidemic,” said County Executive Dr. Sam Page.  “St. Louis County continues to develop resources for our residents, health care providers, and public health partners – focusing on underserved communities – to combat this crisis.”

Naloxone can reverse the process of opioid overdose and is a critical tool for intervention.  Increasing access to naloxone is a priority for the Health Department and has been identified as a key tactic in harm reduction initiatives.  Making it easier for community members and organizations to recognize the signs of overdose.

“The Berkeley health center was selected as a priority distribution site because our North County community has been particularly impacted by the opioid crisis,” said Spring Schmidt, Co-Director of St. Louis County Department of Public Health.  “Naloxone is already available at our Justice Center and through community partners.  Providing it at our health centers is a big step forward.”

Last month St. Louis County’s Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP) expanded the depth of support it offers providers.  Through the PDMP, healthcare providers can track their controlled substance prescriptions to ensure that patients are only receiving recommended doses.

Because Missouri is the only state without a statewide prescription monitoring system, St. Louis County administers the program for 75 participating jurisdictions across the state.  Through this massive drug monitoring effort, 94% of providers throughout Missouri are covered.

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