Is There Really a Narcan Vending Machine in Grand Rapids?
Opioid overdose is a community health epidemic – both prescription medications and heroin, and it's here in Grand Rapids and West Michigan just as much as it is across the country.
Obviously, we all wish this weren't the case, but what happens when someone does overdose. You can call 9-1-1, for sure, but that may take a bit of time. However, what if you had Naloxone (Narcan) handy, a medication that rescues an individual from an opioid overdose and saves lives.
Believe it or not, there is a FREE Narcan vending machine here in Grand Rapids at The Red Project, at Hall and Madison on the Southeast Side of Grand Rapids.
You're asking yourself, what is the Red Project, I've never heard of them and what do they do?. The Grand Rapids Red Project is a 501c3 non-profit organization dedicated to improving health, reducing risk, and preventing HIV, and drug issues since 1998.
Red Project has equipped over 1,000 law enforcement officers from over 50 departments in West Michigan with Naloxone (Narcan) Rescue Kits.
Since 2015, Red Project has trained staff from over 15 agencies, serving over 31 additional counties to provide Naloxone Rescue Kits to their community members. Also, Red Project has worked with other organizations in the state to provide Overdose Education and Naloxone Distribution programming.
There are also Narcan vending machines in all 3 West Michigan Community Mental Health Buildings located in Mason, Lake, and Oceana counties.
All of these vending machines, and the one here in Grand Rapids, require someone to request the code from the front desk to obtain a dose, but it is FREE. This way children aren’t accidentally able to get them from the machine, and it can be tracked as to how many are being utilized!
Pretty amazing, but so glad there are people who care out there and are ready and willing to help in a big way.
Here are some tips for self-care during the pandemic: