MARION COUNTY, Ind. (WLFI) — Health officials in Indianapolis say they are dishing out naloxone at record levels.
Naloxone is a life-saving antidote to rapidly reverse opioid overdose, and it costs $33 a dose.
Indianapolis EMS crews used naloxone about 1,800 times last year.
With a month still remaining in 2017, more than 2,000 doses of the antidote have already been applied.
Some health officials are unsure that buying and using more naloxone is making a difference.
First quarter numbers on opioid deaths in Marion County show a 30 percent increase over last year.
“The optimistic approach would be that we're seeming to be getting some ground in this thing but I'm not sure that is necessarily the case. We are seeing an increase in the number of folks that are getting it more than once in a year anywhere from to two to four, five, six, seven times a year,” said Dr. Dan O'Donnell, IEMS Medical Director.
IEMS estimates about 25 percent of its naloxone patients have been saved multiple times.
Marion County will use a $100,000 federal grant to help pay for next year's supply.