- What is the COP program?
Attorney General Schneiderman established the Community Overdose Prevention(COP) program to fund the training and equipping of eligible law enforcement agencies throughout New York State with nasally-administered naloxone. COP dedicates $5 million of funds seized as crime proceeds from joint federal and state criminal investigations to fund the purchase of a “naloxone kit” for every sworn officer in the state that might encounter an acute opioid overdose in the line of duty.
- What does it mean to be an “eligible” law enforcement agency?
Eligible law enforcement agencies must be a participant in the US Department of Justice Equitable Sharing Program. If an agency is not a participant, it can enroll in the program by filling out the federal form attached to this letter or available online here. Enrolling in the federal program is free and does not require staffing or commitments from your agency other than filing an annual report to the federal government.
- What is reimbursed under the COP program?
The COP program will reimburse law enforcement agencies for:
- The expense of equipping officers that might encounter an acute opioid overdose with one full naloxone kit.
- Any necessary expense to train officers to administer the naloxone kit (which is as required for police officers to carry naloxone).
- Replacing the naloxone kits as necessary on a first-come first-served basis, pending the availability of remaining funds at the time the kits need to be replaced.
- Will the COP Program supply participating law enforcement agencies with the naloxone kits?
No. It is the responsibility of participating law enforcement agencies to procure the component parts of the naloxone kits, assemble them, and store them properly. A complete naloxone kit consists of a zip bag or pouch containing two vials of naloxone, two mucosal atomization devices for nasal administration, one pair of latex gloves, and a booklet on the use of the drug. A full naloxone kit costs approximately $60.00 and the shelf life of each kit is around two years. Kits can be carried by officers on their person or in vehicles driven by officers, provided they are generally stored at room temperature.
- How doesparticipating law enforcement agencies acquire naloxone kits?
First, participating law enforcement agencies must arrange training for officers that will be equipped with naloxone. Many NYSDOH registered Opioid Overdose Prevention Programs provide comprehensive trainings free of charge. A list of such programs can be found on the NYSDOH’s website . If no Opioid Overdose Prevention Program or other suitable training exists in your area, then COP funds may be used to provide for reasonable travel and related expenses to facilitate a program for your agency. Typically, the person who trains officers in the use of naloxone will provide officers with a prescription for naloxone in order for them to legally obtain it.
Second, law enforcement agencies must purchase the naloxone kit materials. Often, materials can be purchased or acquired through your County Department of Health or through a registered Opioid Overdose Prevention Program. Law enforcement agencies can also contact the bulk distributors of naloxone or pharmacies.
- When should law enforcement agencies apply to the COP Program?
September 1, 2014.Your agency needs to fill out the application form and return it to the OAG by September 1, 2014. This form may be submitted to the OAG prior to receiving training or procuring naloxone. Submitting the form will result in the OAG reserving COP funds for your agency while your agency works to complete training and obtain naloxone kits. The funds will be guaranteed to your agency until December 31, 2014, after which they may be given to other agencies to provide or replace naloxone kits on a first-come first-served basis.
- How long will the OAG keep funds reserved for a law enforcement agency that has applied before the September 1 deadline?
December 31, 2014. After this date, the funds may be given to other law enforcement agencies to purchase or replace naloxone kits on a first-come first-served basis.
- Where can law enforcement agencies get trained?
Many NYSDOH registered Opioid Overdose Prevention Programs provide comprehensive trainings free of charge. A list of such programs can be found on the NYSDOH’s website. If no Opioid Overdose Prevention Program or other suitable training exists in your area, then COP funds may be used to provide for reasonable travel and related expenses to facilitate a program for your agency. Typically, the person who trains officers in the use of naloxone will provide officers with a prescription for naloxone in order for them to legally obtain it.
- Do participating law enforcement agencies have to submit receipts to the OAG for reimbursement?
Yes, all participating law enforcement agencies must submit receipts for the kits and any related training costs to the OAG.
- Reimbursement for Naloxone Kits: The number of kits necessary to fully outfit your agency will depend on the total number of sworn officers who regularly respond to emergency calls that may involve an acute opioid overdose. The OAG asks you to supply kits only to officers meeting this criteria. Requests for reimbursements to replace kits that are used in the field can be made after June 3, 2014. Such reimbursements will be made on a first-come first-served basis.
- Reimbursement for Naloxone Training: Many NYSDOH registered Opioid Overdose Prevention Programs provide free training for law enforcement agencies. Before requesting reimbursement for training costs, the OAG asks you to work with your local NYSDOH registered Opioid Overdose Prevention Program to arrange for free training. If no such program or other suitable opportunity for training exists in your area, COP will reimburse your agency for reasonable travel and related costs to facilitate a training for your agency.
- What data does the COP Program require of participating law enforcement agencies?
Law enforcement agencies will be required to remit the following data to the OAG monthly as for as long as they are using naloxone kits funded by the OAG.
- Number of naloxone kits used and for what reason (training, overdose treatment, expiration, etc.)
- Number of prescription opioid related overdoses
- Number of heroin related overdoses
- Number of prescription opioid related deaths
- Number of heroin related deaths
- Number of prescription opioid related death reversals
- Number of heroin related death reversals
- Why can law enforcement administer naloxone?
New York State law allows “third party” or lay persons to administer naloxone. Furthermore, New York State enacted a “good Samaritan” law that provides limited criminal protection to those who report drug overdoses in 2011. The law protects individuals from criminal prosecution for certain legal violations when seeking medical care for themselves or others in the event of an overdose brought on by a controlled substance or alcohol.
- How is the OAG paying for the program?
The OAG set aside $5 million dollars in forfeiture money to fund this program. When there is a forfeiture from a joint federal-OAG operation, federal law allows state agencies that participated in the investigation or prosecution to keep funds left over after restitution and a federal share are subtracted. Under federal guidelines, agencies can use federal forfeiture funds for law enforcement training and equipment. Many of these funds are from drug busts so it is fitting that the money will be used to save lives that might otherwise be lost to the drug epidemic.
- Is the COP program a state requirement?
Every county and local police department in the State of New York has been given an opportunity to join the program. If they join, we will give them the money to purchase enough naloxone for their department’s needs and train their force on how to use it. It is not a state requirement, but the OAG hopes that the overwhelming majority will see this as a tremendous opportunity to save lives in their community without any financial burden whatsoever.
- What is naloxone?
Naloxone is an extremely effective tool that can instantly reverse the effects of an opioid overdose. Naloxone (naloxone hydrochloride, brand name Narcan), is an opioid antagonist and can be administered via intramuscular syringe or nasal spray.
- Is naloxone safe?
Clinical evidence shows that naloxone is safe and non-toxic. Limited testing has found naloxone to be non-toxic at up to 12 times its normal dosage (24mgs). The drug has few side effects; however, patients may display the rapid on-set of intense withdrawal symptoms as opioids are abruptly displaced from neurological receptors. Shelf-life varies by dilution, but with proper storage is reported to be between 18 months and three years.
- What drugs are opioids?
In addition to heroin, prescription medications such as oxycodone (OxyContin, Percocet), hydrocodone (Vicodin), morphine (Kadian, Avinza), codeine, and many other medications are opioid-based. Naloxone does not prevent deaths caused by other drugs such as benzodiazepines, cocaine, methamphetamine, or alcohol.
- How does naloxone work?
Naloxone is an opioid antagonist and its effects are immediate and can rapidly reverse the effects of opioid overdose by displacing the opioids from the affected receptors. Opioids slow a person’s breathing, and naloxone helps the person wake up and keep breathing. The drug wears off in 30-90 minutes, which means the person could stop breathing again after naloxone wears off. Always call 911 as an overdose victim may need other care.