When people die by overdose, they’re often not alone. At the Ohio 2013 Opiate Conference, public health nurse Lisa Roberts said she investigated the opiate overdose deaths in her county and found that those who died of overdoses were often with other people when they died. Roberts said that 87 percent of the county’s overdose victims were with another person at the time they died. Many of the people who witnessed the deaths described the victim’s heavy snoring just before death—a sign that the victim was entering the respiratory depression phase, a step toward respiratory arrest and death.
Those who are witnessing overdose deaths often don’t know the signs of overdose or how to help and are often afraid to call 911 for fear of getting into trouble with the police. More states are passing “Good Samaritan” laws protecting people who call 911 in case of overdose, including New Jersey which became the 12th state to do so. Phoenix House praised the leadership of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and New Jersey native Jon Bon Jovi in passing the bill.
If you or a loved one needs help for a substance abuse issue, Phoenix House is here for you. Email us or call today at 1 888 671 9392.