WHAT: A three-hour class offered over three days for emergency personnel to learn about how to protect themselves from fentanyl exposure when responding to opioid overdose cases.
WHEN: Monday, Dec. 11 to Wednesday, Dec. 13 – classes start at 7 a.m. and noon daily
WHERE: Granville Bingo Hall, behind the Granville Fire Station near Morgantown, West Virginia
WHY: The West Virginia University Fire Service Extension is giving firefighters, police, emergency medical service workers, emergency room nurses and others the opportunity to learn about how to protect themselves from fentanyl exposure, which has been closely linked to responding to opioid overdoses.
This three-hour course was developed in response to the sudden increase of opioid emergencies that resulted in first responders requiring medical attention because of exposure to adulterated fentanyl (e.g., carfentanil, remafentanil and acetyfentanil) when treating overdose patients.
The toxin can enter the body many different ways, including contact with the skin, which leaves many first responders at risk. The class will address the properties and hazards of fentanyl and the key steps that can be taken by first responders to protect themselves.
According to organizers, West Virginia is the first state to offer a class of this kind to emergency responders.
CONTACT: Zane Lacko, WVU Extension Communications
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