Dec 21, 2015 1:58 PM

NH first reponders, fire chiefs look to improve response to heroin overdose calls

The Associated Press

CONCORD (AP) — Seeing an increase in drug overdoses by the same people on multiple occasions, a coalition of fire chiefs is seeking state money to hire drug counselors who can train first responders in how to better direct victims toward treatment and recovery services.

Emergency responders have administered nearly 3,000 doses this year of the opioid antidote naloxone, known by its brand name Narcan. It reflects a spike of more than 300 percent since 2012, before the state's current opioid crisis hit its height.

The chiefs are seeking $1.1 million to hire four licensed drug and alcohol counselors — one developing training programs for officers statewide and three more stationed at fire departments in Nashua, Rochester and Manchester.

Lawmakers will take up the proposal in the upcoming session.

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