New Haven EMT recruits train to reverse heroin overdoses

Narcan Naloxone

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — New Haven Fire Department recruits are finishing up their training. They are learning how to save lives reversing heroin overdoses.

“We know that Narcan is for what kind of persons, only people that are on what? Opioids,” EMS Supervisor for the City of New Haven, Kenneth Oliver Jr. said. New Haven’s emergency units are equipped with Narcan and all of the EMT’s in the city are trained to administer the life saving drug that counteracts the effects of opioids.

“It’s saving lives which is great. It’s good for the city and it’s good for the people that we are taking care of so anything we can do to help is going to be a big benefit to us and to the city,” said recruit Mike Salzillo.

Class 59 is getting hands on training and learning how to tell if someone overdosed. “They’re respiration are low. what usually comes in as a call for an overdose we usually are keyed into it. Upon assessment of the patient we will see their respiration are low and their heart rate starts to drop and at that point to intervene, said recruit Dan Scotto.

Oliver Jr. told his recruits, “These people need your help and that with you training you have the capabilities of saving a life. Not only do you save a life but you save somebody’s family.”

Recruits say they’re ready to put their skills to use on the streets, “The signs and indicators are the most important part. You have to be confident that the patient is overdosing so once you know that you can feel pretty confident,” added Salzillo.

Oliver Jr. said, “I think it’s very important because we save more lives and the more lives we save the better.” The class of 14 recruits will graduate on January 12th.

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