An opioid toolkit from Blue Cross Blue Shield. (Blue Cross Blue Shield)
BOSTON (WBZ-AM) -- The state's largest insurer is launching an opioid toolkit to help prevent deadly overdoses.
Blue Cross Blue Shield will offer kits containing Narcan and other items that can be kept on hand in case of an overdose--similar to the concept of defibrillators, which are now common in the workplace. WBZ NewsRadio 1030's Ben Parker spoke to Blue Cross Blue Shield's Medical Director for Behavioral Health, Dr. Ken Duckworth, who said the pilot program is aimed at employers.
"They're going to put this in their municipal buildings, in their pools and libraries," he said. "You could also imagine families having this if they have an impacted person in their own lives. More than half of overdoses happen in the home."
Dr. Duckworth said the Department of Public Health will provide trainers to teach others how to use Narcan. Four Blue Cross customers are participating, including the City of Brockton and the town of Ware, where it will be widely available and could grow.
"I'd like to see Narcan be a tool that is common and ordinary, in concert with what the Surgeon General says Americans should do," he said. "I'd like to see this program expand, and I anticipate that the feedback will help us improve the program, so that we can grow it."
The insurer is also introducing the kits into its own workplaces. Hundreds of the toolkits are ready, and participants will help to decide if the project should be expanded. Hear more about the program below.
WBZ NewsRadio 1030's Ben Parker (@radiobenparker) reports