Middletown, Ohio Declares “3 Strikes And You’re Out?” for Heroin Overdose Victims Denying Them Narcan?

Our drug addiction and recovery community does it’s best to stay up to date with the current news and then reports it to the online recovery community through this addiction blog, our heroin addiction and recovery discussion forum and our popular Facebook page with just under 150,000 followers.  And while I’veread some whoppers before, I simply couldn’t believe what people were seeing on their computer screens, cell phones and IPads the last couple of days when the first article was written.  There are multiple versions of the article going around with few variations.  The one we recently stumbled upon thanks to our New Age Recovery team was titled “Town Considering to Let Overdose ‘Victims’ Die After 3rd Strike”.   Yes, folks, there is a town in Ohio called Middletown that is actually pondering the idea of refusing to provide someone overdosing the antidote drug Narcan (naloxone) if they’ve overdosed two times before.  Below, we’ve provided more information along with a video.

Town Actually Considering to Let Heroin Overdose “Victims” Die After 3rd Strike

The first thing I noticed about one particular version of the article was that the word “victims” was wrapped in quotes, even in the title of the article.  I suppose the author was drawing attention to the obvious question and debate as to whether or not those who overdose are actually victims of their illness or agents of their own choosing – an extension of the popular and ongoing debate – Is Addiction a Disease or a Choice?

With all the information readily available at each person’s fingertips however, this should no longer be an argument.  People can ultimately believe what they want but addiction has been declared a disease by the AMA (American Medical Association), SAMHSA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) and many other well respected medical associations.  So like it or not, believe it or not, addiction is a disease and thus, at least some part of the perpetual compulsion to use drugs makes those who suffer from addiction, victims!  Besides, the issue really shouldn’t really be whether or not an individual did it to themselves….it was done inadvertently and they are dying.  They are victims and they deserve immediate medical attention from the professionals just as much as a heart attack or stroke victim.

What Does the Actual Article Say?

As stated previously, there are multiple versions of the article. But many point back to one titled “Middletown considers 3 strike policy on responding to overdoses” calling it the original.  The referenced article is below for your reference:

Middletown considers 3 strike policy on responding to overdoses

Middletown, Ohio Considers 3 Strikes and You're Out Policy on Responding to Heroin Overdoses“A controversial proposal has been made in Middletown to deal with heroin overdoses.

Middletown is considering whether people with addiction should only be given two strikes before they’re out of chances at Narcan.

Middletown is struggling to deal with the heroin problem.

“We are faced with stress on our services, particularly the EMS services where we can do six to eight opioid overdose runs a day,” said Paul Lolli, fire chief of Middletown.

The number of overdoses jumped this year. Last year, there were 532 overdoses. So far, only halfway through 2017, there are already 577.

Also last year, the department spent more than $11,000 on Narcan. This year, $30,000 has been spent on it.

This is a result of more overdoses and the increasing strength of the drugs addicts are using, officials said.

The number of deaths from overdoses is on track to increase, as well. Last year, there were 74 deaths. So far this year, there are 51.

Leaders are frustrated trying to find a solution.

City council member Dan Picard is proposing a three strikes system. After the first two overdose rescues, the person would perform community service for the equivalent amount of money used on the lifesaving response.

The third strike is a bit more controversial.

“If the dispatcher determines that the person who’s overdosed is someone who’s been part of the program for two previous overdoses and has not completed the community service and has not cooperated in the program, then we wouldn’t dispatch,” said Dan Picard, Middletown city council member.

The fire department said they are required by law to provide Narcan if they do respond to an overdose.

Picard said this plan is not aiming to solve the drug problem; it’s an attempt to save the city’s finances.

“We’ve got to do what we’ve got to do to maintain our financial security and this is just costing us too much money,” Picard said.

Until legal advisers look at the plan proposed by Picard, the fire department is applying for grants and accepting donations to fund more Narcan.

Is Middletown Ohio Responsible for Drug Overdose Deaths if They Don’t Respond?

Middletown, Ohio Considers 3 Strikes and You're Out Policy on Responding to Heroin OverdosesThe article makes things very clear…Middletown, Ohio is trying to save money, not lives.  They are much more concerned about money than human life.  It appears that they are justifying it by blaming the victim for the overdose because they acted on what feels like an irresistible, powerful compulsion to use heroin.  Yet ironically, the vast majority of heroin users don’t use with the intent to kill themselves.  But whether they’re intent is to live or die, denying them a life-saving service is undeniably horrific.

So here, the victim is being blamed so why bother to help them right?  In my opinion, this would be a lot like creating a law where women who are raped for wearing a provocative outfit more than twice will be denied medical treatment, first responder help, law enforcement assistance, etc.  After all, if a woman is going to be foolish enough to keep wearing provocative outfits, why keep helping her if she is attacked right? Lord forgive me for even writing this because I think most people in the world, especially our readers realize how preposterous and horrendous it is to even say this.

Addicts are Sick and Required Treatment and Life-Saving Measures

I don’t care how much it costs Middletown, Ohio or any city for that matter.  If a man or woman is dying from a heroin overdose, they require immediate assistance that will save their lives.  Then, they require long-term assistance to treat their disease – something else we simply don’t have enough of.

Need addiction Help?

Our online community helps men and women suffering from drug and heroin addiction who are sick and tired of being slaves to addiction get the help and treatment they want, need and deserve.  For those ready for a chance, fill out our brief treatment contact form.


 

Written by William Charles, Owner/Publisher of Kill the Heroin Epidemic Nationwide™, Heroin News and the National Alliance of Addiction Treatment Centers (NAATC)

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4 thoughts on “Middletown, Ohio Declares “3 Strikes And You’re Out?” for Heroin Overdose Victims Denying Them Narcan?

  1. How could anyone even consider not saving someone’s life if they are able to? I have put my safety and financial security on the line to attempt to save my son and others, and would do it again in a heartbeat. God bless all who struggle and suffer.

  2. What about the Drug dealers get nothing . Complaining about money there are to many in foster care what if these people have kids .Gov always complaining about people on welfare. People don’t know what battles people are going threw it would be easier to find help for them

  3. Aren’t the addicts trying to commit suicide? I believe that all of them have serious psychological problems that led them to want to do a drug that kills you. Bring back the mental hospitals that used to exsist. The addicts are saved. Jobs are created. I think its a win-win.

    • P,

      “Aren’t addicts trying to commit suicide”?

      Only a small percentage of addicts actually intend to commit suicide when using drugs. The majority are just trying to satisfy a burning cognitive compulsion that defines the disease of addiction in hopes that they can feel normal or preferably “better” than their current state. Addition can be defined as a psychological disorder or sorts, but there are also many very real physical components to the disease. Drug rehabs and addiction treatment centers have truly helped a lot of people jump start their recovery, but given that there is no cure for the disease of addiction, recovery is ongoing and when people leave rehab, it’s crucial that they find something to continue practicing their recovery.

      Best wishes,

      William – Publisher of this Community

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