ROCKFORD, IL--Narcan is saving lives nationwide--six in Winnebago County alone.
The drug is included as part of an emergency overdose response kit, for use in the case of heroin or other drug overdoses, and had been shown to reduce rates of fatal overdose.
It's a new tool to the Winnebago County Sheriff's Department that county coroner, Sue Fiduccia, says is beneficial and life-saving. "Every law enforcement officer should have [Narcan] training,” says Fiduccia.
But despite the drug's success in the U.S., Rockford police have no plans to use the drug.
Assistant Deputy Chief Pat Hoey says,” The Rockford Fire Department has such a quick response time to medical calls, and because the Rockford police don't respond to medical calls in Rockford, like the Sheriff's Department and other smaller departments do, we chose not to take on the administration of the drug.”
But State Representative of the 68th District, John Cabello, questions what happens if the police respond before the Fire Department and Narcan is needed.
"Is there going to be a time where the fire department is tied up?" asks Cabello. "[If] there is, [and] if the police are first on scene, it's going to help save somebody's life if they have Narcan.”
Fiduccia say, "It’s very important for the police departments to have [it], because it [can be] the difference between life and death."
Representative Cabello says they are discussing potential legislation on Narcan.