Join Health Equity Alliance on August 31 for Its Narcan Party Celebration
On Thursday, August 31, Health Equity Alliance (HEAL) will commemorate International Drug Overdose Awareness Day with a free Narcan Party in Pickering Square from 5-8 pm. Friday Night Fire and Summit will be playing live during the event and Eat at Joe’s will be offering food for purchase.
In 2016, 376 Mainers died from drug overdoses. HEAL has been running a campaign, Keep Calm and Carry Naloxone, to raise money to combat this tragedy. With a goal of $28,200, HEAL hopes to raise enough money to distribute 376 Narcan kits – one for each of the lives lost last year.
Between March of 2016 through January of 2017, the HEAL distributed 252 kits containing Narcan directly to people actively using drugs. Kits were accompanied by training on preventing, identifying and responding to an opioid overdose, as well as a postcard to report the results of using the medication. Of the 252 kits distributed HEAL staff has heard of more than 60 successful reversals, for a 25% reversal rate.
“That’s 60 lives saved,” remarked Ross Hicks, HEAL’s Harm Reduction Coordinator, “60 families spared the loss of a parent or child. 60 fewer deaths in the Attorney General’s report. The evidence is there: direct distribution to people who use drugs works. It saves lives.”
All proceeds will be used to maintain and expand access to naloxone in an effort to lower Maine’s escalating overdose death rate, including fostering new distribution points in areas that currently lack access to the medication.
To celebrate the success of the campaign, HEAL staff and advocates invite the community member to join them on August 31st, in honor of International Overdose Awareness Day, at Pickering Square in Bangor from 5 – 8 pm for free entertainment!
Click here to learn more about the Keep Calm and Carry Naloxone Campaign. For more information about the event, please contact HEAL’s Director of Development and Communications, Andrea Littlefield at (207) 990-3626.