VR Naloxone Training Video Unveiled By County Officials, UPenn

By: Follow South Jersey Staff

Narcan boxes like these are in many Camden County schools and parks. Photo credit: Camden County.

CHERRY HILL, N.J. — The Camden County Prosecutor’s Office commissioned the University of Pennsylvania to create a Camden County centered virtual reality training video on the administration of Narcan, the brand name of Naloxone, an emergency treatment for narcotics overdose that was presented by the Prosecutor’s Office along with the Camden County Board of Commissioners, the Camden County Addiction Awareness Task Force and staff from University of Pennsylvania’s Schools of Nursing and the Annenberg School of Communications on Friday, Oct. 27.

The nine-minute video will be used for an alternative to support the Naloxone training in schools for students, staff and administrators, bus drivers and other entities that carry the lifesaving pharmaceutical, according to a press release from the county. Funding for the training video was from the 2022 Overdose Data to Action Operation Helping Hand grant, administered by the New Jersey Office of the Attorney General.

“Narcan is a critical tool in our battle against the opioid and overdose epidemic,” Commissioner Director Louis Cappelli Jr. said in the press release from the county. “It is imperative that as many people as possible are trained in how to administer this lifesaving medication and this instructional video will help us do that. I want to thank all the entities that partnered together on this venture, and I am extremely proud that Camden County is continuing to lead the way when it comes to defeating the opioid epidemic.”

Camden County Health Officer Dr. Paschal Nwako stated that Narcan has made a major impact and the training will help further that impact.

“We have been battling this public health emergency for more than 10 years,” Nwako said in the press release. “But Narcan has made an incredible impact by reversing the effects of an overdose. By training and equipping people to use this life saving medication, we can really make a difference in the opioid and fatal overdose epidemic.”

According to the county, there were 10,200 administrations of Narcan across the state of New Jersey and 1,312 in Camden County from January to October 2023.

Camden County Prosecutor Grace MacAulay said that the training video is a way to reach thousands.

“This nine-minute video succinctly breaks down the barrier of fear by reassuring people on the warning signs of overdose, how easy Narcan is to use, and if it’s discovered that it was not an overdose situation and Narcan was not needed – there is No harm to the individual,” MacAulay stated.

To continue to help reduce overdoses , the Camden County Commissioners have also installed Naloxone boxes throughout the county park system and every public school from Camden City to Winslow Township (see Follow South Jersey story here and here). The Camden County Commissioners also provide free Narcan training sessions, fentanyl test strips, NaloxBoxes for social service organizations, and mental health support for those who have experienced loss due to substance use disorder.

For additional assistance call 1-844-ReachNJ (732-2465), which provides free professional support for those facing addiction and their loved ones. If you are a Camden County resident suffering from substance abuse disorder, please call the Office of Mental Health and Addiction at (856) 374-6361.

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