The Grand Junction Fire Department and Mind Springs Mental Health are teaming up to improve their collaborative efforts in tending to the mental health needs in Grand Junction. Recently, as part of that collaboration, GJFD offered training to Mind Springs employees at three separate detoxification facilities on the proper use of naloxone, commonly known as Narcan. Narcan is a medication that first responders have used to re-establish breathing in patients who have overdosed on narcotics. The drug essentially reverses the effects of the overdose, and allows first responders to stabilize patients on their way to receiving advanced care.
Michelle Hoy, Executive Vice President at Mind Springs said, “Our facility decided to start carrying Narcan because the opioid crisis is real and we are committed to saving lives.”
GJFD is teaching Mind Springs employees at these treatment facilities how to recognize narcotics overdoses and alert EMS, how to properly use the nasal mist form of Narcan, and how to provide continuing care between administering Narcan and the time when EMS arrives. Sheldon Kier GJFD EMS Chief said, “While we haven’t seen a huge increase in our administration of Narcan in the field, the opioid epidemic in our nation has really taken center-stage. Any time we can work with other healthcare providers in our community, our citizens benefit.”
In the future, GJFD and Mind Springs hope to extend this collaboration in the community by pairing mental health specialists with GJFD paramedics, and GJPD Officers to respond to behavioral health emergencies. The goal of each organization’s combined efforts is to get the right medical and mental health resources to the right people at the right time. For more information on this collaboration contact the Community Outreach Office at GJFirePIO@GJcity.org or by phone at (970)549-5858.
If you or someone you know is experiencing a mental health crisis call the National Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255, o red nacional de prevención de suicidó (888) 628-9454.