At the August Board meeting, Ms. Fraley-Monillas reported that the Edmonds police chief recently received an email from the County stating that as of Dec. 31 there will no longer be funding to provide police departments with Narcan/naloxone. Ms. Fraley-Monillas and Chair Stephanie Wright asked for staff to bring additional information forward at the next meeting for further discussion.
Staff reached out to Snohomish County Human Services for more background. Snohomish County Human Services collaborated with law enforcement to develop the Opiate Overdose Prevention Project. In April 2015, the first naloxone/Narcan training began and naloxone was distributed to trained officers. The County provided a breakdown of Narcan distributed to agencies since 2015, including total cost per year (Exhibit A).
Human Services staff notified law enforcement partners in an email on June 28 that there will no longer be funding for the Opiate Overdose Prevention Project beginning in January 2020. For the remainder of 2019, expired Narcan will be replaced, and Narcan deployed for a suspected overdose will also be replaced. After December 31, 2019, each law enforcement agency will be responsible for continuing to supply their personnel if they choose to continue.
At the September meeting, the Board asked staff to reach out to the cities to see what their plan is for supplying Narcan to law enforcement after the end of the year. Staff was also asked to come back to the October meeting with options of what the Health District can do, including training and coordination, and options for funding it.
The District is hosting an AmeriCorps VISTA member, who is a federal employee in partnership with Housing Hope and Hope Works. The District’s cost for Mr. Wansing position is $5,000, which is funded through our opioid grant. Mr. Wansing is providing opioid outreach and working with community partners. There’s a possibility he could provide data tracking and coordination with Narcan distribution, should the Board decide to move forward. He is also in the process of becoming an ACT trainer, where he could work with business and community groups to offer Antidote (Narcan), CPR and Tourniquet trainings.
Staff reached out to the cities and their police departments to inquire what their future plans are for Narcan supplied to their law enforcement. Information gathered is included in Exhibit B. Staff also reached out to the fire districts and departments to get a better sense of their usage and funding mechanisms, which is included in Exhibit C. Lastly, staff at Snohomish County Human Services provided more detail on the law enforcement Narcan deployments for apparent opioid overdoses (Exhibit D).
At the September meetings with the Executive and Administration Committees, options for funding were discussed. The cost has been approximately $45-50K/year for the County to supply Narcan to law enforcement. Staff noted to the committees that expiration dates for current Narcan kits deployed in the field need to be researched and inventoried to get a better sense for immediate costs.
The executive committee requested that staff bring this item, with options, forward to the full Board for discussion and potential action. The options discussed include:
Decide not to pursue the transition of the Narcan program to the Health District for coordination.
The County Executive’s budget includes $250K for the MAC group; it’s possible the District might be able to apply for those dollars but that’s not a guaranteed funding option.
Similarly, staff could look into other grant opportunities, but that would take time with unclear outcomes.
Tying the program to per capita dollars from the cities. The suite of services could include purchasing of Narcan, tracking of inventory and expirations, data collection upon deployment of a kit, and community outreach and trainings.
For those cities that don’t contribute a per capita but still want to provide Narcan to their law enforcement agency, the Health District could coordinate the ordering, tracking of inventory and expirations, and data collection. Those costs could be billed directly to the cities, plus an admin/overhead fee.