MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Schools may have a way to stop opioid overdose deaths on their campuses.
Alabama state senators announced Thursday the manufacturing company Kaleo is providing auto-injection devices for public and private schools. The devices are meant to help prevent someone from dying from an opioid overdose. The device is called EVZIO and can help a person start breathing again.
In May, Kaleo provided Alabama first responders with these devices. Republican Sen. Gerald Dial, District 13, held a press conference Thursday afternoon announcing that it has saved 15 lives since then.
Dial also announced the expansion of the program to schools.
"This would be a great asset to have in schools in case we need them," Dial said. "Unfortunately these drugs are beginning to trickle down to the schools. If you have no way to treat them, once they have an overdose and they are there, then they're at the mercy of the Lord."
Dial said one of these devices costs around $3,000.
If a school requests a device, one person will be designated to use it. This person will go through training with the Alabama Department of Public Health.
"It's so simple a legislator can do it," he said.
A person would take the cap off and inject the drug, called Naloxone, into someone's thigh. Each school would receive one device.
"We want to make them available," he said. "Hopefully no school would ever need one of these."
If a school is interested, it can call the Alabama Department of Public Health to set up a meeting.