November 7, 2018 8:11 pm

McGill student teaches how to save lives with naloxone

WATCH: A McGill University student has decided to take a proactive approach to the ever-growing opioid crisis. As Global's Phil Carpenter explains, the student is giving courses on how to properly administer naloxone.

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A McGill University student is giving free workshops on how to use naloxone, an antidote to opioid overdoses.

Richard Davy, a first-year social work student at the school, works with homeless people with others in his department. He has seen a lot of people struggle with drug abuse and was moved to start teaching people.

“Thankfully, I haven’t seen any overdoses, but I’ve seen people come pretty close,” he says.

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READ MORE: Quebec government unveils action plan to fight opioid overdoses, addiction

But he says the problem goes beyond people on the street because so many people have opioids as painkillers in their homes.

“If these get into the wrong hands or you take an extra dose because you get confused, you can find yourself in an overdose situation pretty quickly,” he says.

The opioid problem is growing in the province. According to the Quebec government, more than 300 people have died from suspected opioid overdose since the summer of 2017.

That’s why he says everyone should have a kit.

“Absolutely, this should be part of people’s first-aid kits,” he tells Global News. “This should be part of their kits that they have at home for emergency situations. “People already have EpiPens at home, people have standard first-aid kits.”

His first workshop was at McGill University for anyone who was interested, including one family physician who didn’t want to be identified. He said he needed more information.

“Details — practical details are kind of glossed over, I think, for most doctors,” he says, including where to get the kits.

During the workshop, Davy explained that anyone over 14 years old can get one at any pharmacy in Quebec for free.

READ MORE: Quebec pharmacists to carry fentanyl antidote naloxone

There is an instruction sheet that comes with the kit but Davy gives other tips like staying with the patient until the paramedics arrive in case the patient overdoses again.

Those attending the workshop like Nour Daoud said the workshop was valuable.

“What hit me the most was that this could happen to anybody,” she says.  “This is the story of somebody that hurt their back at work, you’re prescribed something, you become addicted to it.”

She added that you never know when you can save someone’s life.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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