Columbia police now carry Narcan

COLUMBIA, Mo. - Columbia police confirmed on Thursday that the department got 75 kits containing Narcan to help reverse overdoses. 

The kits were issued to officers on Wednesday. Police who received the kits were trained over the past few months in administering the nasal spray. 

Police said the kits were funded through a grant from the Missouri Opioid-Heroin Overdose Prevention and Education Project. 

The kits include a dose of Narcan, nitrile gloves, safety glassless, instructions for use, Narcan use reports, and resource guides for services that assist with narcotics addiction. 

"This is an essential tool to combat the number of overdoses in our community," said Lt. Krista Shouse-Jones, the department's naloxone program coordinator. 

Police said since Jan. 1, officers have been dispatched to over 200 overdoses in the city. 

The Columbia Fire Department said they have administered 21 doses of Narcan since they equipped their personnel in January. 

"Our officers may be the first on the scene on some of these calls. Having them equipped with naloxone has the potential to save even more lives," said Shouse-Jones. 

Officers are expected to carry their kits with them in their patrol vehicle while on duty. 

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