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Navigator Marc speaks to STV about importance of Naloxone

Marc Nelson, one of our terrific Dundee Navigators, recently spoke to STV News about how the opiate-reversal drug Naloxone saved his life.

Marc found a path to recovery and now works to help others do the same. He is based in Dundee’s Ninewells Hospital as one of our Navigators, helping others who present in crisis or with complex social issues to find their own steps forward.

He told STV’s Lynne Rankin: “To be able to turn around to somebody and say there is a route out of the hell that you’re in at this point is, I’m guessing, massively reassuring for them but it’s great to be able to demonstrate that to them.”

His interview was broadcast the day after Police Scotland announced their 6 month pilot with trained officers in Dundee, Falkirk and Glasgow carrying the life-saving drug in the form of a nasal spray.

Naloxone is an antagonist drug which blocks opioid receptors responsible for causing reduced breathing effort, unconsciousness and low blood pressure in people who have taken an excessive amount of an opioid drug, such as morphine, heroin or fentanyl. Data from Public Health Scotland informs us opioid drugs were found to be present in 86% of the 1,187 drug-related deaths recorded in Scotland in 2018.

Our Navigators are all trained to administer Naloxone and carry it with them thanks to a change in legislation. Marc added: “It keeps somebody alive, I wouldn’t be standing here today without Naloxone.”

  • The Navigator Project is run by the healthcare charity, Medics Against Violence, in partnership with the Scottish Government and local NHS health boards. It receives further support from the Scottish Violence Reduction Unit.
  • The project first launched in 2015 at the Glasgow Royal Infirmary emergency department. Over the last 5 years, it has expanded to seven different acute hospital sites across Scotland: Glasgow Royal Infirmary, Glasgow; Ninewells Hospital, Dundee; Queen Elizabeth University Hospital, Glasgow; Royal Alexandra Hospital, Paisley; Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh; University Hospital Crosshouse, Kilmarnock; and University Hospital Wishaw.
  • For further information about the Navigator project and press enquiries, please contact us directly.

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