The Scottish National Naloxone Programme has been recognised in a new toolkit for countries and organisations who hope to implement a Take-Home Naloxone (THN) programme.
The Improving Outcomes in the Treatment of Opioid Dependence (IOTOD) toolkit contains guidance and resources on how to set up a THN programme, in order to reduce overdoses and save lives.
Naloxone is a lifesaving medication that can temporarily reverse the effects of opiate overdose, buying important time until medical assistance arrives.
The IOTOD-THN toolkit was created in collaboration with three partner organisations that coordinate successful THN programmes: Scottish Drugs Forum, Antidote Denmark and the Red Cross (on behalf of the Public Health Agency of Catalonia).
Alongside a multitude of resources, three visual case studies highlight the successful THN programmes and illustrate naloxone distribution from different settings: prison facilities, harm reduction centres and the open drug scene.
The videos allow a unique insight into the programmes’ history and current management, with advice and stories from the individuals who make THN programmes in their communities a reality.
One of the initiatives of the Scottish National Naloxone Programme, co-ordinated by Scottish Drugs Forum, is to distribute naloxone and provide overdose training to people with a history of drug use upon their release from prison, as their reduced tolerance during this timeframe increases their risk of overdosing.
Its implementation has led to a significant reduction in opioid overdose deaths following prison release in Scotland, and there is work to expand the programme in other settings.