$50,000 to help Philly expand use of overdose remedy naloxone

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 Max Tuttleman talks about the importance of state funding for more opioid overdose kits Friday at Philadelphia City Hall. The Tuttleman Family Foundation has donated $50,000 to help the city equip police officers with the lifesaving kits. (Tom MacDonald/WHYY)

Max Tuttleman talks about the importance of state funding for more opioid overdose kits Friday at Philadelphia City Hall. The Tuttleman Family Foundation has donated $50,000 to help the city equip police officers with the lifesaving kits. (Tom MacDonald/WHYY)

A foundation is helping the city of Philadelphia with some potentially lifesaving medication. 

A $50,000 grant from the Tuttleman Family Foundation will subsidize supplies of the drug naloxone, which can reverse an otherwise fatal opioid overdose.

Max Tuttleman of the foundation said the donation will help fill a state funding gap.

“I look forward to a day that private foundations don’t have to fund initiatives like this, and state government can fund projects and support our citizens,” he said.

With the donation, Mayor Jim Kenney anticipates more Philadelphian lives will be spared.

“Last year, we had 907 people die of overdoses in the city, almost three times the number of murders here during the same period,” Kenney said Friday.

Use of naloxone, also known by its brand name Narcan, has already saved 80 people this year, 58 last year and 130 in 2015.  With the donation, the Philadelphia Police Department will be able to double the number of officers equipped with the opioid overdose kits from 1,500 to 3,000.

This disclosure: The Tuttleman Family Foundation supports NewsWorks/WHYY.

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