Treatment center donates Narcan to Ocala Police Department

By Sarah Panko, Reporter
Last Updated: Tuesday, October 10, 2017, 6:01 PM EDT

The Ocala Police Department is equipping all of its 167 sworn officers with an overdose reversal medication called Narcan.  

  • Treatment center donates Narcan to police department
  • Ocala Police equipping officers with the medication
  • Narcan helps reverse drug overdoses

The Centers, a mental health and substance abuse provider in Marion County, donated 200 units of Narcan to the police department on Tuesday.  

Ocala Police Chief Greg Graham said they've had 53 overdoses so far this year, 13 of those were deadly. Graham said most of them were due to heroin.   

"I've had good friends family members who have overdosed and died and just the devastation this drug has on families is unspeakable," Graham said.

Phil Oday says he's been clean for 18 months after dealing with substance abuse for 45 years.  Oday knows many people who have been given the medication and said it saves lives.

"It addresses the crisis at hand that somebody's overdosed and dying,” Oday said. “Unfortunately, it doesn't address the issue of why they're there."

The Centers donated the units of Narcan through a partnership with DCF. Officials said they have more to give out.  

City officials also started an opioid heroin task force.

Ocala Mayor Kent Guinn said the city also wants to put a liaison in hospitals next year to help people who come in from overdoses get to a treatment center.