PROVIDENCE – Care New England Health System announced recently that two of its hospitals, Butler Hospital in Providence and Kent Hospital in Warwick, are distributing naloxone, more commonly referred to as Narcan, to patients who have been treated for a drug overdose or who are at risk for an overdose.
The distribution of Narcan kits at Kent began Aug. 1. The clinical staff in the emergency department follow normal protocol for an overdose patient. After consent, patients will receive the kit before discharge. In addition, through an affiliation with The Providence Center and funding from the Rhode Island Department of Behavioral Health, Developmental Disabilities and Hospitals, Kent Hospital provides weekend access to on-call recovery coaches for patients who are in need of support and counseling. Additionally, trained staff from The Providence Center are available during the week for patient education and outpatient treatment referral.
Butler has been providing kits to patients in its Alcohol and Drug Partial Hospital Program since October 2013 and upon discharge from the Alcohol and Drug Inpatient Unit since April 2014. Since that time, 164 kits have been provided to patients who consented to receive them and also receive education about its use.
At Butler, patients are assessed by a doctor who prescribes Narcan if it is indicated, after informed consent. The patient is shown a brief educational video and receives education on opiate overdose prevention and Narcan use from the physician and from a pharmacist.