The Holly Springs department was the first in the state to be equipped with NarCan kits, and also the first to administer it just six days after officers underwent overdose prevention training.
“It’s a little strange that a town of 10,000 people was needed to administer this stuff twice, which screams to me there’s a major need for it,” Ball said. “To me, I’m disappointed that it hasn’t taken hold in other agencies across the state. It’s really a no-brainer. In my heart, I hoped we wouldn’t have to use it. My cop-gut told me we would, but I still didn’t expect it to happen twice.”
Sgt. Nathan Ernst responded to a call to assist paramedics about 9 a.m. Aug. 2 with a 24-year-old man who was unconscious and not breathing due to a heroin overdose, according to the Holly Springs police.
Ernst said he was monitoring the radio when he heard the call-out in Cherokee County and decided to respond.
Paramedics on scene requested Ernst retrieve the naloxone from his vehicle because they were aware the Holly Springs Police Department has been carrying NarCan kits in all patrol cars.
Naloxone was administered by the paramedics, and a few moments later, the male began breathing and became conscious. The victim was later able to walk to the ambulance, where he was transported for further treatment.
“I’m happy we’re able to use that medication to provide those services to not only the city, but out in the county as well. We were able to give this individual a second chance,” Ernst said.
Holly Springs Police Department was the first department in Georgia to equip its officers with the overdose kits. Gov. Nathan Deal signed the bill into law in April allowing Georgia law enforcement to carry and use the drug, and also to allow residents to get a prescription for naloxone to keep at home or take with them.
Ball said he hopes more departments will take advantage of this overdose training and get on board with having the option to administer naloxone.