The state of Mississippi received a 3.58 million dollar grant to combat the Opioid epidemic. Opioids are a prescription drug that citizens often use as painkillers.
However, some citizens have been known to misuse the drug and evne become addicted, causing a rising number of overdoses.
"It's not very frequent right now but it is getting more frequent," Ellisville Police Department, Lt. Scott Wuertz said. "We haven't had any [deaths] recently but we have had some in the past."
The number of overdoses brought law enforcement officers from all over the state to enroll in a special training session about how to use Naloxone.
"So, today we delivered Naloxone to all of the law enforcement to the 18th Judicial Drug Court," Mississippi Targeted Opioid Project, outreach coordinator, Angela Mallette said. "We go over how to use Naloxon. We go over how to recognize how an Opioid overdose."
Mallette emphasized it is important to initiate Naloxone immediate when dealing with an Opioid overdose.
"There are certain signs we go over in our training, like checking their pupils, rubbing on their sternum, if you can't get a person to respond," Mallette said. "That means they are in an Opioid overdose, and you want to administer Naloxone immediately."
Naloxone can be a powerful tool to help save citizens lives. That's why the state is using 15 percent of their grant money to purchase Naloxone.
"Its a crucial tool to save someone and give them a second chance to go get treatment," Mallette said. "I like to remind people its not the solution but its an important tool."
If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, please contact Mississippi Target Opioid Project at 601-398-4406.