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Narcan Administration

As of recent, the epidemic of opioid overdoses should be familiar to most people. Reports of incidents in wilderness are rare, not entirely zero. Narcan, like the AED, is a valuable skill for both wilderness and emergency medical providers to have. This is why narcan administration know-how is (sadly) so important.

Commonly administered via intranasal spray (2.0 – 4.0 mg per spray), Narcan is a narcotic-antagonist which blocks the narcotic effects of an opiod by occupying, without activating, narcotic receptor sites. The duration of action is roughly 30 to 90 minutes. It is used for the reversal of narcotic effects such as unresponsiveness/altered mental status; especially respiratory depression, due to known or suspected overdose of narcotic opioid drugs.

In the U.S., every state has passed laws to increase access to Narcan (naloxone) and to legally protect people such as first responders, family and friends, police officers and others who administer it. Narcan remains a prescription medication in the United States; however, most pharmacies may be able to provide Narcan without a prescription, upon request.

These curricula recommendations have been adopted from NOLS Wilderness Medicine and have been edited to conform to the standards
set by Center for Wilderness Safety and the Wilderness Medical Society in accordance with the WMS National Practice Guidelines.

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