HEALTH

Christie Reflects on Narcan Program

In less than a year and a half, EMTs and police officers have used some 11,000 doses of the opioid antidote Narcan to save lives. And today, Gov. Chris Christie assessed the program’s value. NJTV News Correspondent David Cruz was in Hoboken. He spoke about the event with Anchor Mary Alice Williams.

Williams: David, tell us what this news conference was about.

Cruz: Hey, Mary Alice. Good evening. We are outside of Hoboken University Medical Center where the governor was here. He sat in on a Narcan training class and also sat for a roundtable and discussed the second year anniversary of something called the Overdose Prevention Act, also known as the Good Samaritan Law, which allowed for the deployment of Narcan. As you said, 11,000 times. But the governor said that this is more than just about Narcan. Let’s hear a little bit of what he had to say today:

Christie: A successful reversal from Narcan does not mean recovery. And I see some of our recovery coaches here. Very important. We talked upstairs about it as well. This is an important part of what this administration is trying to do, to take people from addiction to detox to recovery.

And what I say to folks all the time who I meet whose families have gone through the throes of this addiction is there but for the grace of God go I. And I thank God every day for the fact that to this point in time my children have avoided this particular disease, but I know that that’s just a temporary circumstance and that tomorrow that could change without regard to how good a parent or bad a parent I’ve been. These are decisions that your children make. And we need to make sure that we acknowledge the fact that families of every kind in this state, from every corner of it, are suffering from this disease. And we shouldn’t be making judgments. We should be reaching our hand out to help them. To help them get through, as someone said to me upstairs today, the wreckage that is created by this disease inside a family. And also to allow them to understand that we don’t judge them as parents when their children fall victim to this disease any more than we would judge them if their child fell victim to cancer or diabetes or heart disease.

Cruz: Another aspect of this Good Samaritan Law is that it allows for immunity for someone who is reporting an overdose and the person of course who is suffering from an overdose. That’s an important part of this. Mary Alice?

Williams: David, did the governor take questions on any other topic, like tomorrow’s primary in New York?

Cruz: He did indeed, Mary Alice. The governor has kind of, you know after he endorsed Donald Trump, he kind of disappeared from the campaign trail after he had that internet freak out, or there was that internet freak out about what he looked like standing behind Donald Trump. So he hasn’t been out on the road with him, even in New York, which is having its big election tomorrow, the primary. We asked him and he said, simply, Donald hasn’t called. So we’ll see if he shows up in New York tomorrow.

Williams: OK, David Cruz. Thanks.