HARRISBURG, Pa. -- September 10th marked the seventh renewal of Pennsylvania’s Opioid Disaster Declaration.
Pennsylvania held one of two naloxone kit giveaway days with 95 locations across the state distributing free kits while supplies last.
The Dauphin County State Health Center in Harrisburg is one of those 95.
FOX43 found a mother there on a mission to save a life.
“My oldest son died from an overdose three days before Thanksgiving in 2017. He had Narcan, but it wasn’t with him at the time, and he was by himself," said Nanci Kenyon.
Kenyon's son Jess was 32-years-old.
“He had a substance use disorder but was in recovery for three years, and the coroner said this was the only time he used," explained Kenyon.
Kenyon now carries the overdose reversal drug Naloxone wherever she goes.
“I always carry it because I want to save another parent what I am going through, if I have the chance," she said.
“This parking lot here was a parking lot I had come to receive my substance of choice when I was in active recovery," Lisa Green of Middletown told FOX43. “I’m able to now be on the other side raising awareness, breaking the stigma.”
Health care providers also announced updated prescribing guidelines for physicians in Harrisburg Wednesday morning.
Those guidelines address the ways in which health care providers treat people who suffer from an opioid use disorder and their pain -- the potential to prescribe treatments such as physical therapy, acupuncture, chiropractic treatment, and other over the counter medications.
“I can’t overstate how difficult an area this is in medicine. The Pennsylvania guidelines are among the first in the nation to address the very challenging and increasingly common group of patients," said Scott McCracken, a physician with Wellspan Health.
The good thing? Officials say more and more people are seeking treatment than ever before.
Kenyon sees all of it as a step in the right direction.
“We need to help people, not stigmatize them because if we do that, they’re not going to get help," she added.
There will be a second naloxone distribution day next Wednesday September 25th.
There will be an additional 10,000 kits for people, while supplies last.
Read about Pa. Department of Health's prescribing guidelines here.
Locations in South Central Pennsylvania:
- Adams County SHC, 424 East Middle St., Suite 1, Gettysburg
- Cumberland County SHC, 431 East North St., Carlisle
- Dauphin County SHC, 30 Kline Plaza, Harrisburg
- Franklin County SHC, 375 Floral Avenue, Suite 1, Chambersburg
- Lebanon County SHC, 9 North 9th St., Lebanon
- Perry County SHC, 153 Red Hill Road, Newport
- York County SHC, 1750 North George St., York
- York Bureau of Health, 435 West Philadelphia St., York
Click here to see a full list of locations.