The CareSource Foundation has awarded Overdose Lifeline, Inc. a more than $178,000 grant to improve the prevention of and response to opioid overdoses in Indiana schools. These funds will provide school partners with the emergency, life-saving medication naloxone, develop a custom training course for school staff and connect schools to evidence-based prevention programs.
“CareSource knows schools are a critical partner in the fight against opioid misuse among young Hoosiers,” said Steve Smitherman, president of CareSource Indiana. “We’re proud to partner with Overdose Lifeline to empower more schools to address this issue head on.”
Under an Indiana 2017 law, school districts are allowed to stock naloxone as an “emergency medication,” just as they are able to stock albuterol for severe asthma and auto-injectable epinephrine for severe allergies. However, few Indiana schools have implemented such a program involving naloxone. The Indiana Department of Health Naloxone entity report lists just two: South Bend Community School Corporation and Jennings County School Corporation.
“The Overdose Lifeline team believes it’s essential for Indiana schools to have staff trained in how to recognize and respond to an overdose emergency,” said Justin Phillips, executive director of Overdose Lifeline, Inc. “Additionally, preventative measures can reduce the number of young people who misuse non-prescribed opioids.”
Over the next three years, Overdose Lifeline, with funding from the CareSource Foundation, plans to increase the number of Indiana schools who have implemented an Opioid Overdose Emergency Preparedness and Response program by 275 schools.