Warning re use of Naloxone, a prescription only medicine
As we enter a new year many of our Street Pastors will come into contact with individuals whilst out on patrols who are drug users and/or suffering from the effects of drugs use. I pray God’s continued covering over all those participating in patrols throughout the year, and that you continue to be salt and light in the communities you serve.
It has come our attention that one or more of our initiatives is using and/or has received training for use of naloxone injection kits whilst out on patrol. Naloxone is a medication used to block the effects of opioids, and is typically used to treat a drugs overdose in an emergency situation.
Please note that the use of such kits is not covered by our group insurance as it would go beyond giving first aid and amount to providing a treatment.
Naloxone remains a prescription only medicine (POM), but is exempted from the POM requirements under specified circumstances, ie when being supplied by a drug treatment service for the purpose of saving life in an emergency. Only individuals employed or engaged in the provision of drug treatment services in the course of their drugs work can supply naloxone that has been obtained by their service to others, as long as it is supplied to others in a lifesaving emergency situation.
Based on the guidance note from Public Health England Street Pastors would not come under the category of individuals able to administer naloxone in an emergency situation, consequently we would not advise any Street Pastor to administer the drug, as they would not be covered by insurance in the event that harm was done.
You will also see from the guidance note that there are side effects associated with use of naloxone. In a situation where Street Pastors encounter someone appearing to be suffering a drug overdose, the best course of action would be to call for an ambulance, perform CPR as necessary, and/or place that individual in the recovery position.
God’s continued blessings throughout the New Year
Legal & Policy Officer