Placer County Celebrates 100th Life Saved with Overdose-Stopping Drug

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ROSEVILLE -- Most police officers carry a gun, handcuffs and in many departments wear a body camera while they're on duty.

But as the opioid crisis in the U.S. continues to get worse, officers in Placer County also carry Naloxone.

"Naloxone, to first responders, provides life-saving capabilities to anyone who might need it,” Roseville Chief of Police Jim Maccoun said. “For those who are addicts, it provides a valuable second chance to resume their lives and obtain treatment."

On Monday, Placer County law enforcement agencies celebrated their hundredth life saved by reversing opioid overdoses using Naloxone.

"Every officer in their time working the streets, they've come across people where they've been experiencing an overdose, but they haven't been able to do anything about it. And until that moment happened, we now have that capability,” Roseville Police Sgt. Jeff Beigh said.

Grass Valley and Roseville police were the first agencies in the region to give the drug to their police officers. So far, they've seen major success.

"Not only are lives saved, but countless crimes are prevented every time an addict gets sober and no longer turns to crime to support their addictions,” Maccoun said.

The Placer Nevada Prescription Drug Safety Coalition has also worked with local doctors to reduce the number of opioids they're prescribing, but they say there's still work to be done.

"More importantly and for the future, follow-up care and addiction treatment programs are an investment that our society cannot afford to go without,” Maccoun told FOX40.

Right now, addicts who receive Naloxone do not have to participate in a follow-up treatment program if they don't want to.

So while they celebrate 100 overdoses reversed so far, coalition organizers are looking to the future to try to get more addicts into recovery.

"We here in Placer and Nevada counties have taken some proactive steps so we can deal with this, the opioid epidemic, which is one of the biggest public health challenges of our generation,” Placer County Director of Public Health Dr. Robert Oldham said.

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