Project DAWN is a community-based overdose education and naloxone distribution program. Project DAWN participants receive training on:

  • Recognizing the signs and symptoms of overdose

  • Distinguishing between different types of overdose

  • Performing rescue breathing

  • Calling emergency medical services

  • Administering intranasal Naloxone

What is Naloxone? Among the tools available to prevent opioid drug overdose deaths is Naloxone Hydrochloride (also known as Narcan). Naloxone is indicated for the complete or partial reversal of narcotic depression, including respiratory depression, induced by opioids including natural and synthetic opioids, and certain partial opioid antagonist analgesics. When administered during an overdose, Naloxone blocks the effects of opioids on the brain and temporarily restores breathing within minutes. Naloxone has been used safely by emergency medical professionals for over 40 years and has only one function: to reverse the effects of opioids on the brain and the respiratory system in order to prevent death. Naloxone is a highly specific medication which means that when it is administered in standard doses and in the absence of opioids or agonistic effects of other opioid antagonists, it exhibits essentially no pharmacologic activity. Naloxone is not a controlled substance and has not been shown to produce tolerance or cause physical or psychological dependence. Naloxone is an incredibly safe medication and it is impossible to overdose on Naloxone. The only contraindication for Naloxone is in patients who are known to be hypersensitive to the medication. Administration of Naloxone varies based upon the setting in which it is administered. While most commonly given by intramuscular injection (IM), it can also be administered intranasally using an atomizer device that delivers a mist to the nasal mucus membrane. The device used for this latter form of administration is not yet FDA approved, but studies show that it is just as effective as IM injection. In addition, intranasal administration is becoming increasingly common in overdose prevention programs throughout the country, commonly referred to as Naloxone Prescription Programs (OENDPs), because it prevents needle stick injuries and its overall ease of use.

Overdose Death Reports for Vinton County through 2018, data can be accessed here.

For more information please call Cassie or Sarah at the Vinton County Health Department 740-596-5233.