Aetna, a MACo Gold Corporate Partner, has partnered with Howard County by providing its first county donation of naloxone.
Aetna provided the county with 408 naloxone kits to be placed in the box of every automated external defibrillator, AED, box in county-owned buildings. Following the press conference on the partnership, that occurred December 12, the first group of 25-county employees was trained to use the kits.
Aetna’s Maryland Operations President Michael Bucci:
Not only is Aetna the County’s provider of health care services, it’s an area where many of our employees live and work – including myself. I’m honored that Aetna can help make a difference by donating these Narcan kits to Howard County. The opioid epidemic does not discriminate; these kits can, and do, save lives.
Howard County Press Release:
In the months to come, the Health Department will work with other departments of county government to bring training to employees.
Howard County Executive Alan Kittleman has provided an hour of leave to each county employee to use for training.
Howard County Executive Allan Kittleman:
We’re battling the worst drug epidemic in U.S. history, Our county, like other counties in Maryland and across the country, is experiencing the tragic impact of this crisis every day. We’ve got to try new and innovative approaches to fight this, and the partnership with Aetna will allow us to add Narcan to all AED boxes in county-owned buildings. We’ll have Narcan available for overdose emergencies, just as we have AEDs and Stop-the-Bleed kits for other emergencies.
Earlier the day of the press conference, Deputy Sheriff Dave Manning used naloxone to reverse a heroine and methadone overdose in the county courthouse. The naloxone, retrieved from the AED box, was placed by the sheriff’s department – a process that began about a month ago.
In 2017, 216 overdoses occurred in Howard County with 55 fatalities. Naloxone saved the lives of 90 percent of the 161 non-fatal overdoes.