“For many, hurricane prep means procuring enough addiction treatment meds to get through an entire length of a natural disaster.
While most Florida residents were boarding up their windows and securing their yards in preparation for Hurricane Irma’s arrival in September, Dr. Hansel Tookes was handing out clean needles and Narcan, the opioid reversal drug, to drug users in Miami.
Tookes, a University of Miami doctor who previously tried to get a needle exchange established in South Florida, worried that drug users who were unable to access medication-assisted treatment in the aftermath of the hurricane would relapse and potentially overdose.
“Hurricanes are stressful, but I think my major concern was people who were reliant on medication-assisted treatment, especially Suboxone and methadone, would not have access to those services in the event of a major storm,” Tookes told PBS. “And therefore would be likely to use heroin and have a risk for overdose because the heroin and the fentanyl on the streets is an extremely powerful combination.”
Source: TheFix.com – December 12, 2017