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Quick Response Teams take personal approach to ODs


The Herald-Dispatch

From left, Larrecsa Cox, Bob Hansen and Connie Priddy discuss Quick Response Team operation plans.
(Herald-Dispatch photo by Lori Wolfe)

HUNTINGTON, W.Va.  — A simple small town value may soon prove to be one of the most effective methods in reversing the damage of the opioid epidemic in Huntington — once dubbed the “Overdose Capital of America” by national media.

To know your neighbor and their problems, to offer a kind word and a hand-up at their life’s lowest point have until recently eluded any systematic practice in the grand scheme of troubleshooting addiction. In the more than 4,200 overdose calls in Cabell County since 2014, a first responder’s job nearly always ended when the naloxone injection stopped. Once revived, the patient and paramedic parted ways, too often to be reunited under identical circumstances.

But since last December, Huntington’s overdose victims have begun meeting a new type of care based on the simple, neighborly principals delivered right where they live — all in the belief that no person wants to live a life of addiction and will someday seek help if it became available.

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