More than 250 city firefighters recently received anti-overdose drug, Narcan, use training from the St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center’s Mobile Intensive Care Unit Paramedics allowing them to save two lives within hours of training.
“The Narcan training program proved effective within the first 10 hours of implementation by the Firefighters, as one City resident’s life was saved from heroin overdose and was taken to St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center for additional emergency care,” Mayor Jose “Joey” Torres said. “A second life was saved just hours later in the same manner.”
Fire Chief Michael Postorino said the fire department often collaborates with the medical center. “They are people we interact with daily and depend upon for their knowledge and insight,” Postorino said. “We were pleased to have our firefighters trained by the St. Joseph’s Mobile Intensive Care Unit paramedics.”
St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center also donated Narcan kits to the Paterson Fire Department. Narcan, also known as naloxone, is an antidote to drug overdose. Law enforcement officers have been using Narcan to reverse heroin overdose in emergency situations when a person’s life is at risk.
“St. Joseph’s Healthcare System is proud to collaborate with the City of Paterson – and in this case the Paterson Fire Department – as we work together to enhance the health and wellness of our community,” Kevin Slavin, President and Chief Executive Officer at St. Joseph’s Healthcare System, who presented firefighters with the Narcan kits, said. “St. Joseph’s continues to take the national lead in the fight against opioid addiction with such programs as this Narcan training initiative and the ALTO Alternatives to Opiates program implemented by our Emergency Department, which is a model for other healthcare providers, nationally and globally.”
Photo Caption: Deputy Fire Chief Pablo Del Valle symbolically accepts single Narcan kit on behalf of the Paterson Fire Department from Slavin. Joining them are (shown left to right) John Nickel, Director, Mobile Intensive Care Unit, St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center; Chief Michael Postorino, Paterson Fire Department; Director Jerry Speziale, Paterson Police Department; Chief William Fraher, Paterson Police Department; Kevin Webb, Clinical Coordinator, Mobile Intensive Care Unit, St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center; James Pruden, MD, Director of Emergency Preparedness and Emergency Medical Services, St. Joseph’s Healthcare System; Mayor Jose Torres, City of Paterson.
Report updated June 17, 2016 at 4:12 p.m.