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GetNaloxoneNow: Everything You Need to Know to Save a Life

May 30, 2018

Earlier this year, Dr. Jerome Adams, the Surgeon General of the United States, issued the following  advisory on naloxone and opioid overdose

I, Surgeon General of the United States Public Health Service, VADM Jerome Adams, am emphasizing the importance of the overdose-reversing drug naloxone. For Patient currently taking high doses of opioids as prescribed for pain, individuals misusing prescription opioids, individuals using illicit opioids such as heroin or fentanyl, health care practitioners, family and friends of people who have opioid use disorder, and community members who come into contact with people at risk for opioid overdose, knowing how to use naloxone and keeping it within reach can save a life.

Janie Simmons, EDD, Developer of GetNaloxoneNow

One way that you can be prepared, get naloxone, and save a life is with the online resource, GetNaloxoneNow.  

We posed a few questions about GetNaloxoneNow to Janie Simmons, EDD, principal investigator at NDRI, and one of the developers of the product.

As you'll see from her answers that follow, GetNaloxoneNow is a versatile product that provides rapid training for professionals as well as laypeople.

What is is a novel website (operating out of NDRI-USA and NDRI, Inc.) which houses two overdose prevention, recognition and response trainings; one for laypeople and the other for professional first responders (police officers, firefighters and EMTs). The training for laypeople, which we call the Bystander training, takes approximately 20 minutes while the training for professional first responders takes about 40 minutes.

Each training was put together by an experienced team of overdose specialists (MDs, prevention researchers, curriculum designers and experts with experience training first responders) as well as top-notch graphic designers, animators and professional voice narrators with funding from the National Institutes of Health/National Institute of Drug Abuse (1R43DA029358-01A1 and 1R43DA033746-01). Both trainings were modeled after best-practice models used in Massachusetts and New York and were developed in accordance with theories of multimedia learning to enhance retention.

Anyone with a computer, notebook, tablet or smartphone can access the trainings from work or home. The website also houses numerous links to relevant articles and other online sites supporting overdose education and naloxone dissemination, as well as articles and informational sites on effective drug treatment, harm reduction, and other proven strategies to address the epidemic. In addition, there are links for support for family members and additional info (i.e. on fentanyl risks) for professional first responders. A certificate of completion is provided to those who pass two interactive quizzes and a post-test administered online at the end of the 40-minute training. is supported by the GetNaloxoneNow Facebook page and the #GetNaloxoneNow twitter account. New information (news, articles, studies, reports, commentary) are provided almost daily on these sites.

How many people have been trained through 

As of May 29th, over 70,000 people have taken the trainings since they went online on August 31st, International Overdose Day, in 2014. Currently, an average of 100 individuals register for the trainings (approx. 65 laypeople and approx. 35 first responders) every day.

Is there a cost for the training? 

The trainings are free and we are committed to providing them at no cost to individuals. However, we need to be able to sustain this life-saving project so, beginning in early June, we will be asking $10 for Certificates of Completion. We have found that many organizations, including for-profit and non-profit organizations, schools, universities, drug-treatment programs, and police and fire departments require their staff or students to provide Certificates as proof of completion. We support this practice, of course, but we will start to request a small fee.

The Bystander training also carries one Continuing Education CASAC credit. These credits are required in NY State, and there are reciprocity agreements in place for 47 other states and territories, as well as the US military, to honor these credits for continuing professional education in the field of substance use/misuse. We hope to provide CE credits for other professional groups in the future.

How can states use 

We have a special subscription service for states. States that subscribe receive monthly registration data. For example, we share how many people register for the training, demographic data, where they get on the site (by zipcode) and a visual state-wide map, as well as data on how they answer a series of questions (Have you overdosed; Have you witnessed an overdose; Why you are taking the training (for work, for a family member, etc.).

For First Responders, we also ask if they carry naloxone; if not, if they'd like to carry it; and if they have witnessed or intervened in overdose emergencies. We work with state and/or local DOH representatives to target particular areas of the state or particular demographics with social media campaigns advertising We also either provide a unique page for each state on our website that is made visible and accessible to anyone registering for the training from that state (recognized by zipcode) or we lead the trainee to a web page designated by the state (usually the overdose page of the state DOH) once they successfully complete the training in order to find out more information about overdose and naloxone in their state, and where to obtain naloxone.

What kind of feedback have you received from people who have completed the training? 

Feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. My colleagues and I evaluated both trainings with funding awarded to us through the Center for Drug Use and HIV Research (CDUHR) at New York University (Grant # P30 DA011041). These evaluations assessed the impact of the training on self-reported confidence, knowledge and skills to intervene successfully in an opioid-related overdose emergency among a sub-sample of laypeople and professional first responders and assessed satisfaction with the trainings. Analysis of the post-training surveys indicated high satisfaction with content, format and mode of delivery, and high satisfaction with items related to confidence and overdose reversal preparedness. The study demonstrated the feasibility and preliminary acceptability of the trainings as well as suitability for rapid, cost-effective dissemination. 
Our findings were published in Drug and Alcohol Dependence (
and Substance Use and Misuse (
We have also translated the Bystander training in Spanish and plan to have that online within a few weeks (if not sooner).

Do you have an additional question about Post it in the comments section below: 

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The opinions expressed herein are the views of the authors and do not reflect the official position of the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), SAMHSA, CSAT or the ATTC Network. No official support or endorsement of DHHS, SAMHSA, or CSAT for the opinions of authors presented in this e-publication is intended or should be inferred.