Nonprofit supplies 200 overdose rescue kits for schools and families in Pike County
PIKEVILLE, Ky. (December 11, 2023) – As the number of drug overdose deaths among young Americans continues to rise, a nonprofit is working to increase affordable access to the life-saving drug Naloxone. HarborPath, an organization with over a decade of experience in providing free medication to those in need, is partnering with Pike County School District to distribute emergency rescue kits of Naloxone to schools throughout the district.
The Pike County School Board voted unanimously in November to launch the pilot program with HarborPath and distributer FFF Enterprises. The program will provide 200 ONEbox™, emergency overdose rescue kits to schools and homes across the district. The rescue kits include two doses of Naloxone, easy-to-follow, on-demand, video instructions and information on recovery resources from partner nonprofit Operation UNITE.
“We applaud the Pike Country School District for its efforts to save lives in a region that has been so deeply impacted by the opioid and overdose epidemic,” said HarborPath president Ken Trogdon. “We’re proud to establish this program to supply schools and families with free and accessible Naloxone. It is our mission to ensure overdose rescue supplies are on hand and available in a life-or-death situation.”
Also commonly known as Narcan, Naloxone is a nasal spray that blocks the opioid effects from the brain, quickly reversing overdoses and saving lives. HarborPath is collaborating with fellow nonprofits nationwide along with state and local governments to make Naloxone affordable and accessible in high-need areas.
Prior to the launch of this pilot program, Pike Country Schools was already ensuring Naloxone was available on the campus of their schools. This additional approach of providing at-home resources for families will take their forward-thinking initiative a step further.
“We are thankful for the partnership with Operation UNITE and HarborPath.” said Pike County School District Superintendent Reed Adkins. “We understand students sometimes have difficult situations at home and our goal has always been to support them in every way possible. Fentanyl is a growing problem and overdoses are occurring across the county at an alarming rate. We hope our students, or their families never need Narcan, but want to have it available if it is needed.”
The emergency rescue kits were developed in partnership with the Drug Intervention Institute, a non-profit based in Charleston, West Virginia and exclusive distributor of the ONEbox™.
“Our Institute mission is to reduce overdose deaths in Appalachia and across the nation by proliferating the country with naloxone in the same way fentanyl has proliferated our nation’s drug supply,” explained Dr. Susan Bissett, Institute president. “School-aged children are particularly at risk of overdose, and we’ve seen an increase in fentanyl exposure to younger persons throughout the United States. Harbor Path is making strides to protect the children and communities in Pike County Kentucky, and we are proud to partner with them on these efforts.”
Operation UNITE (Unlawful Narcotics Investigations, Treatment and Education) has been serving southern and eastern Kentucky since 2003 in providing substance abuse prevention programs, youth education and treatment access.
“Pike County Schools has been at the forefront of erasing stigma associated with the disease of addiction, providing resources to assist families to enter treatment and providing prevention programming through the UNITE Pike coalition to educate and empower youth to live drug free lives,” said Tom Vicini, President/CEO of Operation UNITE. “HarborPath is providing Narcan and storage units to each school to further the efforts to save lives in the communities and schools in Pike Co. Operation UNITE is pleased to support Harborpath snd the Pike County School system in this essential project.”
HarborPath aims to build on local efforts with a multi-state approach to deploying Naloxone through nonprofit organizations, county health departments, college and university health centers, or directly to consumers. To learn more about its efforts, visit HarborPath.org/naloxone-program.
HarborPath is a national nonprofit that provides underinsured and vulnerable patient populations in the United States with free, life-saving specialty medications. By utilizing strategic business, nonprofit and municipal partnerships, HarborPath has distributed over $88 million worth of free medication to the uninsured over the last decade. HarborPath’s Naloxone Right Now initiative provides communities suffering from the opioid and illicit fentanyl epidemic with access to life-saving Naloxone. Naloxone Right Now utilizes efficient inventory management and distribution technology by FFF Enterprises to effectively distribute this life-saving medication where it’s needed most.