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Columbus School Officials Increasing Access To Overdose Antidote

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Bartholomew County school officials say a student overdosed on opioids Monday morning at Columbus East High School in an attempted suicide. A resource officer was able to revive the student with naloxone. School officials now say they plan to increase access to the overdose antidote.

Last spring, four Bartholomew Consolidated School Corporation schools received doses of the overdose intervention drug.

Student Assistant Coordinator Larry Perkinson says even though most schools are within a couple minutes of responders, there’s still a chance help wouldn’t reach a school in time.  

For the last year, BCSC officials have been working on policy and training so that school nurses will be equipped with naloxone.

But, Overdose Lifeline Founder Justin Phillips says there’s still a lot of pushback to getting it in the hands of school nurses across the state.

“We reached out to the department of education and tried to have conversations in regards to how can facilitate that,” Phillips says. “We can provide the training. We do believe school nurses are a natural avenue for naloxone to exist.”

Perkinson says all schools in the district should have naloxone within the month.

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