GREENVILLE COUNTY, S.C. (WSPA) – With a new year, many people have resolutions they hope to accomplish. Including, getting treatment to help with drugs and alcohol addictions.
The Phoenix Center has resources that could help save your life. They teach you how to use Narcan and give you some to take with you, Fentanyl test strips are also provided to check any substances you may have.
The Phoenix Center is an in and outpatient treatment facility, open to anyone.
“It’s a new year. It’s time for goal setting for a lot of people. For many folks, that may mean they’re trying to reduce or eliminate their alcohol or drug use.”
Jessica Owens, with the Phoenix Center, said Narcan is a medication used to reverse opioid overdoses.
“So, your opioids are going to be your pain medications, such as Norco, Oxycodone, Roxicodone, Heroine, and Fentanyl,” she said.
Owens said we are in a Fentanyl crisis.
“Fentanyl, historically, was mostly found in Heroine, pressed pills that may appear to be Opioids,” stated Owens. “But now we are finding it in Cocaine, and most recently, there’s been a drastic increase with Methamphetamine being laced with Fentanyl.”
Owens said anyone using drugs should test them.
“We do have Fentanyl test strips that we use, so we’re able to give these out to the public as well. And people are able to test their drugs,” said Owens.
She said they give out 300 to 400 each month, but these methods aren’t always 100% effective.
“One reason that is, is because Fentanyl is not going to be evenly distributed,” said Owens.
She said people need to test each time they use any type of drug. She said to think of it like the proportions of a Chocolate Chip Cookie.
“You’re never going to know where those chocolate morsels are, they’re different in each cookie,” she said. “Same way with Fentanyl, you don’t know exactly where it may be in your drugs.”
Treatment won’t be forced by getting these resources, but Owens said it’s always available.
She said by helping raise awareness, they hope to save lives.
“What we hope people will do is change their behavior. They still may use their drugs, but A, they may make sure they have Narcan on them, right?” said Owens. “Since Fentanyl is in the drugs, they may choose to use less, or they may choose to use slower if they’re using IV means.”
Owens said they hear story after story of how people saved lives or use their drugs differently after getting Narcan and test strips. She said if payment is the reason anyone hasn’t gotten treatment, they will work with you on that.
Owens said they also have a nurse that can help treat wounds people may have while learning about Narcan or getting free test strips.