In recognition of the toll the heroin epidemic is taking on the community, Delaware County Council, District Attorney Jack Whelan, and Delaware County agencies formed the Delaware County Heroin Task Force in 2012 to address this public health concern.
The mission of the Heroin Task Force is to provide young people, parents and educators with information regarding the destructive and addictive nature of heroin and abused prescription drugs.
Task force goals include:
•Reduce the demand for heroin and illegally used prescription drugs;
•Educate citizens about the resources available to prevent and treat addiction;
•Reduce drug-related crime in the community through public education and law enforcement.
Naloxone is a special narcotic drug that reverses the effects of other narcotic medicines. Naloxone may also be used to treat narcotic drug overdose or to diagnose narcotic drug addiction.
Just over a year ago, Delaware County Council and District Attorney Jack Whelan stood on the steps of the Delaware County Medical Examiner’s Office joined by members of the Delaware County Heroin Task Force and Delaware County police chiefs to pledge their support for legislation that would change state law and permit police officers in Pennsylvania to carry and administer nasal naloxone.
Commonly known as Narcan, naloxone is a drug that can reverse an opiate overdose and bring an unresponsive person back to life.
Since the law went into effect eight months ago, Delaware County police have made 49 saves with naloxone, administered to those suffering from an opioid drug overdose.
Delaware County remains the only county in Pennsylvania to have county-wide implementation of nasal naloxone for law enforcement and has become a model program for the state.
District Attorney Whelan noted that the success of the naloxone initiative along with other efforts to reduce heroin use was made possible through the partnership between law enforcement, the community and coalition members, behavioral health members and educators that is exemplified by the formation of the Delaware County Heroin Task Force.
http://www.co.delaware.pa.us/heroin/15heroinfight.html (Delaware County PA, Press)
MEDICINE DROP BOXES:
Delaware County residents can join in the fight against the heroin epidemic by disposing their unused or expired prescription drugs from their medicine cabinets at any of the 40 permanent medicine drop boxes that are located at police department across the county. Every police department in Delaware County that requested a drug drop box now has one, including one in the lobby of the county Government Center in Media. To date, more than 4,000 pounds of drugs have been collected and destroyed by the Delaware County District Attorney’s Criminal Investigation Division.
For more information, please contact: Dana Rachko at 484-444-0412 or by email at: Dana.Rachko@holocmbbhs.org