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Opioid overdose prevention programs may reduce deaths, reports Journal of Addiction Medicine
Date:6/3/2014

9,000 OOPP participants. Nearly half of patients participating in OOPP programs had experienced an overdose during their lifetime, and about 80 percent had witnessed an overdose.

Eighteen studies provided data on nearly 1,950 naloxone administrations. When naloxone was given in response to an overdose, the person giving it was usually also an opioid user.

Eleven studies reported 100 percent survival; the rest reported survival rates of 83 to 96 percent. Two studies provided data suggesting that OOPPs were associated with community-wide reductions in opioid overdose deaths. The studies also provided information on 12 unsuccessful administrations, in which naloxone did not reverse the overdose for various reasons.

Need for More Research on OOPP Implementation and Effectiveness

Studies suggested that OOPP training increased bystanders' knowledge of overdose prevention and risk factors. Training also increased the use of appropriate overdose strategiesalthough many bystanders continued to use inappropriate strategies as well. Training didn't seem to increase bystanders' willingness to call EMS.

Many communities have established or are interested in establishing OOPPs to help stem the rising tide of deaths from opioid overdose. However, there are continued questions about the implementation and effectiveness of these programs. So far, research studies on OOPPs have been limited in number and quality.

An accompanying article discusses the experience of establishing an OOPP at one substance use disorders treatment center. The experience highlights some of the challenges to introducing this new approachfor example, getting "buy-in" from addiction center professionals and staff.

"OOPP participation is associated with overdose reversals, increased knowledge and ability to respond appropriately in an overdose situation, and the ability of non-medical bystanders to safely administer naloxone," Wilder a
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Contact: Connie Hughes
Connie.Hughes@wolterskluwer.com
646-674-6348
Wolters Kluwer Health
Source:Eurekalert

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