A 26-year-old man is recovering after being given four doses of naloxone to restart his breathing when he overdosed in a downtown Winnipeg bus shelter on what's believed to be a fentanyl-based drug called down.
At about 6:30 p.m. on Monday, a Downtown Biz Ambassador came across the man in the Graham Avenue Transitway and flagged down cadets to help, police said in a news release on Tuesday.
Cadets believed the man had overdosed, so they gave him three doses of naloxone, a nasal spray that can temporarily reverse an opioid overdose and restore breathing. A fourth dose was administered by a general patrol officer.
By the time an ambulance arrived, police say the man had regained consciousness.
Police believe the man had overdosed on a fentanyl-based drug called down, which they say is associated with a number of sudden deaths in the city.
Meanwhile, the City of Winnipeg announced on Tuesday that staff in some city-operated facilities are now trained to administer naloxone in response to suspected overdoses in addition to their other first aid training.
"Opioids continue to be a significant public health concern and increasing access to naloxone will save lives," said Mayor Scott Gillingham in a separate release.
Naloxone is safe for all ages, and only works if you have opioids in your system like fentanyl, heroin, morphine or codeine, the city says.
Staff at recreation and leisure centres, indoor pools, fitness centres and libraries will be able to administer naloxone while waiting for paramedics to arrive.
However, city-run indoor arenas and community centre facilities, which are not managed by the City, are not included in this initiative.
Bourkevale Lawn Bowling, which is not staffed, is also not included.
Members of the public can't pick up naloxone kits at city-run facilities, but can get free take-home kits at Manitoba Take Home Naloxone Distribution Program sites.