Perceptions of Naloxone Training and Administration Among Law Enforcement
Goodall, Katelyn Rae
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The opioid epidemic was officially declared a public health emergency in 2017 when the rate of deaths per day from opioid overdoses was steadily increasing (CMS, n.d.). As of 2019 – 2020, 61,297 of the 83,544 reported drug overdose deaths were attributed to opioids in general, with 48,729 accounted for by synthetic opioids (CDC, 2021). Due to the significant impact on public health and safety, law enforcement departments have been tasked with developing and implementing naloxone policies and trainings. Law enforcement officers are often the first on the scene of an overdose outnumber fire rescue and emergency medical responders across much of the United States (Lurigio et al., 2018). Equipping officers with naloxone affords the opportunity to administer life-saving interventions as a means of combating the opioid epidemic. In a review of the types of harm reduction trainings developed for law enforcement, Khorasheh et al. (2019) found that there were varied formats of delivery, duration, content, location of delivery, and the developer/facilitator of trainings. No study to date has assessed the impact of individual components of training and the role of the facilitator at enhancing the transfer of training, specifically related to naloxone training. This study evaluated training components from a transfer of training model. The current study examined responses from 82 law enforcement officers in agencies across the United States via a survey designed to assess officer perceptions of substance users, naloxone training, effectiveness of training, and preparedness to respond to opioid overdose calls. The results of this study indicated perceived agency priority on naloxone training and officer’s perception of training as relevant to their career both significantly impacted overall perception of naloxone training effectiveness.