Last year we heard about a CPR app that alerted people who knew CPR to nearby cardiac arrests so they could race to the scene and perform bystander CPR, potentially saving precious minutes that could mean the difference between life and death, or between anoxic brain injury and the life of a taxpayer.
This week I read that the FDA has opened up a competition for software experts or software laymen to develop a similar application for opiate overdoses. A sort “Got Narcan? app” where if someone came upon an opiate overdose they could activate the app, sending out a signal to anyone will a cellphone and access to Narcan to grab the kit and atomizer and hustle to the scene.
Searching for naloxone to cure a heroin overdose? The FDA wants an app for that.
FDA launches competition to spur innovative technologies to help reduce opioid overdose deaths
There is already an app for that. It’s called 911.
Reading the article though, it did make some sense. They give the example of an apartment building where a neighbor could arrive quicker than the ambulance. An apartment with perhaps a clientele into tattoos and Kurt Cobain music. (They may have Narcan, but don’t strike me as candidates with lightening response instincts)t. Or I suppose, say someone discovered someone passed out and blue in the ladies room of the McDonald’s. Hit the app, and you never known with heroin addiction as widespread as it is, perhaps several diners may have Narcan on them. Not just addicts, traveling in twos, but family members of addicts who live in fear of coming upon a loved on Oded. Car stopped at the intersection in front of you, not going even though the light turned green. Twenty-five year old driver slumped over with agonal resps. Grab your Samsung phone or any mobile phone and hit the new Narcan app. Oh wait, grab the Narcan you carry in your glove box, next to your CPR mask, and registered handgun (those of you who are always prepared).
The Got Narcan app is easy to make fun of, but it is just another example, not only of the seriousness of the opiate crisis, but people’s fear in the face of the growing dragon, the opiate epidemic.