In an effort to reduce the number of deaths due to an increase of drug overdoses in Ohio, the State Board of Emergency Medical, Fire and Transportation Services (EMFTS) recently revised Ohio’s EMS scope of practice to allow emergency medical responders (EMRs) and emergency medical technicians (EMTs) to administer intranasal naloxone (Narcan) to a person suspected of suffering from an overdose upon completion of training and the approval of the medical director.
The Ohio Department of Public Safety Division of Emergency Medical Services developed an intranasal naloxone education training module as a resource for Ohio EMS that can be accessed online at www.ems.ohio.gov.
“Traditionally, naloxone is given intravenously, and this method has been within the Ohio EMS scope of practice for Advanced Emergency Medical Technicians (AEMTs) and Paramedics for many years,” said Mel House, Division of EMS executive director. “Recent studies including several conducted in the pre-hospital setting show the benefits of its use via the intranasal route that include the reduction in the risk of a needle stick injury and the associated potential infectious disease exposure for EMS providers.”
The Division offers two PowerPoint presentations on intranasal naloxone training that are designed to assist local EMS and fire agencies, Ohio EMS instructors, and local EMS medical directors. These educational presentations support all involved parties in meeting the training requirements prior to implementation of the updated Ohio EMS scope of practice to allow administration of intranasal naloxone by EMRs and EMTs.
The naloxone training program offered by the Division of EMS is not mandatory for all Ohio certified EMRs and EMTs, but local training, written protocols, and medical director approval are required before the local medical director allows them to administer intranasal naloxone in the field.
The Ohio Division of EMS is in the process of adding the department’s Public Safety Training Campus (PSTC) in the near future as an Ohio EMS Online CE Training opportunity.
Ohio EMFTS Board accredited and approved training institutions can use the training in these PowerPoint presentations to provide or incorporate into an EMS continuing education opportunity following Ohio Administrative Code (OAC) 4765-7-09.