The Province of Alberta has given more first responders access to Naloxone kits to help battle against opioid deaths.

Fire Fighters will carry the kits with them when out on medical response calls along with EMS personnel.

ken thevenot 2017 (3)Okotoks Fire Chief Ken Thevenot

This includes the Okotoks Fire Department and Fire Chief Ken Thevenot says they're sometimes on the scene of a medical response before an ambulance arrives and may need to administer the kits and start the recovery process.

"We had 328 medical co-responses and we had 74 first responses in 2016," he says. "Potentially there could be times we arrive on scene and somebody could be in an overdose situation."

With fentanyl overdoses climbing in the province with 343 deaths related to them last year the province has deemed it a public health crisis.

Thevenot says it's another route to potentially saving someone's life.

"It seems that all these overdoses with fentanyl that are going on in particular our province and in our area we want to make sure that if we come across this and we're on scene first that we can help out with an individual."

The fire department has 20 Naloxone kits at their facilities now and are going through the training to make sure they're ready to perform the procedures properly and safely.

Thevenot says all members of the department should be trained by the end of the month.

"These kits act to reverse so if it's a needle, it's called an inter-muscular or an IM where you take a needle, you draw the medication and then you'd inject it into an arm to counteract the overdose."

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