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A new organization based in Kelowna is looking to expand naloxone training beyond the city’s streets.
Headed by Ariel Smith, a second-year medical student at UBC, Okanagan Naloxone Training offers hands on training with naloxone kits in either personal or group sessions.
“Everyday people, businesses, friend groups, students, a lot of people are really interested in receiving proper training but don’t have an avenue to do so,” explained Smith.
“The idea that only those on the street are using opioids is a big misconception, a large number of overdose deaths actually happen to people using in a private residence.”
Working closely with H.O.P.E Outreach in Kelowna, the program uses exact replicas of all the supplies in a naloxone kit sourced directly from the BC Centre for Disease Control.
“Sometimes you have no idea which people in your life are using drugs,” said Smith.
“In the more affluent populations, there's a lot of stigmas and it leads to people not having a plan in place in case of an opioid overdose.”
Okanagan Naloxone Training has plans to host a large training session in the near future at the UBC Okanagan campus.
“It's totally free, we try to create a casual environment because it's a sensitive topic for a lot of people,” added Smith.
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