ALBANY, N.Y. (WKBW) - New York State is now encouraging New Yorkers to carry a life-saving antidote to opioid overdoses.
Governor Andrew Cuomo announced a brand new fentanyl awareness campaign Tuesday. Fentanyl is a dangerously potent opioid that is 50 to 100 times more potent than morphine. It is often mixed into other drugs like heroin, but only three milligrams of fentanyl can be deadly, compared to 30 milligrams of heroin.
As part of the campaign, the state is encouraging New Yorkers to carry naloxone to help when someone is experiencing an overdose.
As part of the State Department of Health's Naloxone Co-payment Assistance Program y ou can get naloxone for little or no-cost at participating pharmacies across the state. You can get more information here.
In New York State, opioid overdose deaths involving opioids increased nearly 35 percent between 2015 and 2016. However, fentanyl-related deaths increased at a much higher rate - nearly 160 percent statewide.
New Yorkers struggling with an addiction, or whose loved ones are struggling, can find help and hope by calling the state's toll-free, 24-hour, 7-day-a-week HOPEline at 1-877-8-HOPENY (1-877-846-7369) or by texting HOPENY (Short Code 467369).