The World Health Organization is developing guidelines on the management of overdoses due to drugs such as heroin and prescription opioids. The preferences of people who might be affected by the guidelines, such a people who use opioids, their friends and families, emergency care services and the health care staff who treat opioid opioid overdose are one factor being considered in the development of these guidelines. If you belong to one of these groups we would greatly appreciate your input.
The issues covered by the guidelines include the management of opioid overdose with opioid antagonists such as naloxone - a specific antidote to opioid effects, including whether or not naloxone should be made available to people who are likely to witness an opioid overdose, even if they are not medically trained. Such people could include family members of people who use opioids, close friends, people who use opioids themselves and non medical emergency service workers. The guidelines also cover other aspects of managing an opioid overdose, including resuscitation techniques, and what to do after the person who overdosed has resumed consciousness, including whether or not transfer to hospital is necessary.
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