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Saving Pennsylvania Lives

In 2016, it is estimated that more than 4,600 Pennsylvanians lost their battle with opioid-use disorder. That equates to approximately 13 Pennsylvanians dying every day from an opioid overdose. Rescuing patients the midst of an overdose, or children born suffering from withdrawal symptoms, is vital step in addressing this epidemic.

First Responders Saving Lives

First responders play a vital role in saving a person suffering an opioid overdose by using naloxone. In April 2015, Pennsylvania Physician General Dr. Rachel Levine signed a standing order prescription for first responders for naloxone and another standing order for the general public so that everyone can obtain life-saving naloxone. Through December 2017, police reported to the Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs (DDAP) they saved more than 6,400 lives. 
Mark McCullough, a recovery specialist and overdose survivor knows first hand the importance of first responders having access to naloxone. 
  • Four counties (Forest, Fulton, Juniata, and Sullivan) do not have municipal police departments.
  • Urban areas have a significantly higher total number of naloxone reversals.
  • Counties where 100 percent of police departments stock and carry naloxone tend to have higher numbers of successful saves.
NOTE: There is no legislation mandating that law enforcement report naloxone reversals to DDAP; these data represent voluntary self-reports from departments. Also note that "Police Coverage" values refer to 2017 and 2018 data only.
Emergency Medical Services Naloxone Doses Administered

The data depicted in this map show doses of naloxone and naloxone hydrochloride (depicted as naloxone) administrations by emergency medical services (EMS) providers at the scene of an emergency by county.  The data are derived from EMS patient care reports completed by certified EMS providers in the field.  The data are filtered on the following National EMS Information System (NEMSIS) fields: Provider Primary Impression equaling “Overdose/Poisoning/Ingestion” in which naloxone or naloxone hydrochloride was administered to a patient.  The record is further filtered by incident county.  These data are aggregate and cannot be inferred to represent a single dose given to a single patient.  Additionally, the data do not depict patient outcome, nor that the patient receiving naloxone or naloxone hydrochloride was truly experiencing an opioid overdose.

Naloxone for First Responders

This interactive map shows all counties in Pennsylvania with an approved Centralized Coordinating Entity (CCE) for naloxone, which is made available through $5 million in state funding. More than 60,000 Naloxone kits, which include two, 4-milligram doses in each, will be available to all 67 counties over a two-year period using the funding. The kits are supplied by Adapt Pharma, Inc. First responders can contact their local CCE to obtain naloxone. 

Emergency Departments Saving Lives

Of the 171 emergency rooms in the state, 152 report overdose visits to the Department of Health. The data not only helps identify where additional resources like rescue and treatment are needed throughout the state, but localized trends in overdoses. 

Helping Newborns with Signs of Opioid Withdrawal

Newborns with Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome were exposed to opioids in the womb, either through prescribed medications or illegal drugs. Identifying these newborns is essential to getting them the help they need to lead successful lives. The map and chart below show how many newborns covered by Medicaid have been born with NAS. (Data reported by home county and not by county of birth.)  The data are not all inclusive and will be updated when more data is available. 
There are no data for the following counties: Bradford; Cameron; Centre; Clarion; Clinton; Columbia; Forest; Fulton; Huntingdon; Indiana; Jefferson; Juniata; Lebanon; McKean; Mifflin; Montour; Northumberland; Perry; Pike, Potter; Snyder; Sullivan; Susquehanna; Tioga; Union; Warren; Wayne or Wyoming.

Pennsylvania’s Get Help Now Hotline

Pennsylvania’s Get Help Now hotline launched in November 2016. To date, trained hotline staff have fielded over 30,000 confidential calls from individuals concerned about their own or a loved one’s drug or alcohol use, and facilitated nearly 14,000 warm-line connections directly to treatment providers. The hotline is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and can accommodate 240 languages. Anyone can access the hotline by calling 1-800-662-HELP (4357), or by texting 717-216-0905.
Call Intakes Per County
since November 2016
Types of Treatment Referrals
since November 2016

Get Help Now

Call 1-800-662-HELP 

Are you or someone you know suffering from a prescription drug or heroin problem? We can help. 
Call 1-800-662-HELP (4357) for information about treatment resources. Your call is completely confidential. This hotline, staffed by trained professionals, is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week and is available in both English and Spanish.  Not comfortable calling? You can also text 717-216-0905 for assistance. 
Visit the Get Help Now website and search for care providers in your area or view local resources in your county.

Get Naloxone

Anyone in Pennsylvania can get life-saving naloxone from their local pharmacy.
Acting Secretary of Health and Physician General Dr. Rachel Levine has signed a standing order prescription so that anyone in Pennsylvania can get naloxone. Download a copy of the naloxone standing order

Drug Take-Back

Drug take-back boxes are available across the state for residents to dispose of unneeded prescriptions.
The availability of drug take-back boxes gets unwanted or unneeded prescription drugs out of homes. Search for prescription drug take-back locations in your county by using either your zip code or your county.

Have a question or comment? Email RA-DHPRESSOFFICE@pa.gov.