Skip to main content Skip to footer

Opioids and Naloxone Programs

Contents of a Naloxone kit.

The HKPR District Health Unit is taking a proactive stance in the battle against opioid crisis.  Offering education, prevention strategies, and access to life-saving naloxone kits to individuals. The Health Unit fosters awareness, provides support, to drive positive change as we work together to combat the opioid epidemic and promote a healthier, safer community for all.

WARNING Toxic Drug Supply Suspected in Nearby Community

Here is important information about a recent event in the City of Belleville that caused an alarming increase in drug poisonings.

Subscribe to receive Drug Poisoning Alerts directly to your email.

Opioids

All drug use come with health risks, including the risk of becoming addicted. Street drugs like heroin, cocaine, ecstasy and methamphetamine are listed as illegal substances under the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act. Prescription drug use can also lead to addiction and other health risks.

If you think an overdose has occurred:

  • Call 9-1-1 immediately.
  • Administer Naloxone, if available.

Opioids are a family of drugs (whether purchased legally or illegally) that have pain relieving effects. Opioids slow down basic functions in the body like breathing, heart rate, and blood pressure, and can sometimes produce a “high” or euphoria which can make them addictive.

Common types of opioids include: 

  • Fentanyl 
  • Morphine 
  • Codeine (found in Tylenol 2, Tylenol 3, Tylenol 4) 
  • Oxycodone (OxyContin) 
  • Heroin 
  • Hydrocodone (Vicodin) 
  • Hydromorphone (Dilaudid) 
  • Percodan (Percocet) 
  • Methadone 

Opioid overdose has the potential to be fatal. Individuals who use opioids are susceptible to overdose and the possibility of developing addiction. Depending on usage methods, there's also a risk of contracting diseases like Hepatitis C and HIV. To minimize these risks, consider utilizing Harm Reduction Supplies and participating in Naloxone Training.

For a deeper understanding of opioid-related health challenges and mortality rates in the HKPR district area click here.

If You Use Drugs 

Get Help with Quitting

  • Find a program in your area that provides an outpatient or inpatient treatment option that matches your needs.

Get Help with Harm Reduction

Carry Naloxone

It is also important to know that even if you reverse an opioid overdose using naloxone, you should still call 911 for emergency help. A person can overdose again when the naloxone wears off, even if they haven’t used more drugs, because the drug may still be in their body.

Avoid Mixing

    • Try to avoid mixing drugs, alcohol or other prescribed medications. Speak to a health care provider, your local Public Health Unit or harm reduction program first to confirm if it’s safe to do so.

Good Samaritan Drug Overdose Act

The Good Samaritan Drug Overdose Act provides legal protection for people who experience or witness an overdose and call 911. Learn what is and isn’t protected on the Government of Canada Website.

Canada is experiencing an opioid crisis, and youth are being exposed to drugs and illegal substances at a growing rate. This can have a devastating impact on individuals and families. 

It is important to know about the use of substances which can impact youth, families, and communities. Parents and educators are encouraged to learn the facts about prescription drugs, street drugs and other substances such as cold medications, inhalants, and steroids to help keep children safe. 

See Drug Free Kids Canada Guide for more information. 

If you know a youth who is struggling here are local support agencies that can help

24/7 Telephone Support: 

  • Kid’s Help Phone: Call 1-800-668-6868 or Text 686868 for free, confidential support to young people from a professional counsellor or trained, volunteer crisis responder. 

The province is ensuring that Ontarians receive the care they need, when and where they need it and the supports necessary to address their addiction struggles and live fulfilling lives.

ConnexOntario provides free and confidential health services for people experiencing problems with alcohol and drugs, mental illness or gambling by connecting them with services in their community that best match their treatment needs. These include outpatient day/evening programs and bed-based support, which requires individuals to live in residence at treatment centres.  You can connect with someone for information and referral to services in your community 24 hours a day, seven days a week by:

On the ConnexOntario website you can find locations and hours for some of these services and information on:

  • Rapid Access Addiction Medicine clinics
    • no appointment or referral is needed to get help, including prescriptions for opioid agonist therapies (such as suboxone or methadone) and counselling referrals if you don’t have a primary care provider

Register with Breaking Free for a free and confidential recovery support program where you learn positive coping skills and proven behaviour change techniques that can help reduce risky opioid use. 

Speak to your doctor, nurse practitioner, other health care provider, at the HKPR District Health Unit or harm reduction program about connecting you to the right supports.

If chronic pain plays a role in your opioid use, you may be a candidate for a referral to one of Ontario’s 18 chronic pain clinics. Talk to your doctor or nurse practitioner to see if this would be a good option for you.

If you need help finding a doctor, nurse practitioner or other health care provider, visit Health811 online or call 8-1-1 to speak with a registered nurse available 24 hours a day to help with any non-emergency health matter and find local services in your area.

Report an Overdose

Help us track and respond to drug poisonings and overdoses in our community by anonymously submitting information.

Naloxone

Naloxone is an emergency medicine that temporarily reverses the effects of an opioid overdose until the person can get to the hospital for treatment.  

Naloxone is a medication that can temporarily reverse the effects of an opioid poisoning/overdose and allow time for medical help to arrive. Naloxone is an opioid antagonist. This means it blocks the effects of opioids, such as heroinfentanyloxycodone and hydrocodone. It can restore normal breathing to a person whose breathing has shallowed or stopped because of an overdose.

Naloxone is available for free through pharmacies, community organizations and Public Health Units.

Naloxone is a safe drug. Giving naloxone to a person that is unconscious because of a non-opioid overdose is unlikely to cause harm. Naloxone will not reverse overdoses that are caused by non-opioid drugs (e.g., overdoses caused by alcohol or cocaine, benzodiazepines, Xylazine).

If you or someone you know uses opioids or other street drugs, it is a good idea to have a naloxone kit.

Ontario Naloxone Program (ONP): Needle Exchange Programs, Hepatitis C Programs, Consumption and Treatment Services and participating community-based organizations distribute injectable and nasal spray naloxone kits to individuals at risk of opioid overdose and their friends and family.

Ontario Naloxone Program for PharmaciesParticipating Ontario pharmacies distribute injectable and nasal spray naloxone kits to individuals at risk of opioid overdose, their family and friends, and people in a position to care for at risk individuals.

Naloxone in the workplace: Find out if you are required to have a naloxone kit at your workplace, get a kit for free and training on how to use it.

Need more information check out the video below!

A naloxone kit can be picked up from an HKPR District Health Unit office. Below is a description of the Naloxone kit contents: 

Nasal spray kits 

Each nasal spray naloxone kit includes: 

  • 1 hard case (for example, a zippered hard black case with red “naloxone” cross) 
  • 2 doses of naloxone hydrochloride intra-nasal spray (4 mg/0.1ml) 
  • 1 rescue breathing barrier 
  • 1 pair of non-latex gloves 
  • 1 card that identifies the person who is trained to give the naloxone 
  • 1 insert with instructions (English and French) 
Picture of Naloxone Kit Contents

Individuals

Individuals at risk of opioid overdose and their friends and family can access naloxone kits from community-based organizations. You do not need a prescription or an Ontario health card to get free nasal spray naloxone kits from participating:

  • needle exchange programs
  • hepatitis C programs
  • public health units
  • First Nations Health Access Centres
  • AIDS service organizations
  • community health centres
  • outreach programs
  • withdrawal management programs
  • shelters
  • hospitals with an emergency department or urgent care centre
  • HKPR District Health Unit office locations

Program staff will train you on how to recognize an opioid overdose and how to use a Naloxone kit.

You can pick up Naloxone Kits from any HKPR District Health Unit office location Monday-Friday 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Holidays hours may be different, please call ahead 1-866-888-4577, location information click here.

Individuals can also pick up kits from Pharmacies NOT all pharmacies carry naloxone kits. Call ahead to check if your pharmacy has naloxone kits in stock. You can also ask the pharmacist any questions you might have.

Participating Ontario pharmacies offer free  naloxone kits. You do not need a prescription or an Ontario health card to get a naloxone kit. The pharmacist will train you on how to recognize an opioid overdose and explain how to use the naloxone kit.

Search the map of pharmacies and community organizations that shows where you can get naloxone kits and training on how to use them.

Find more information on free naloxone kits for individuals.

Businesses

Starting December 2022, Ontario’s Workplace Naloxone Program is providing support to employers who are required to comply with the naloxone requirements in the Occupational Health and Safety Act by providing free naloxone training for up to two workers per workplace and/or one free nasal spray naloxone kit per workplace.

Find more information on free naloxone kits for businesses.

For group in-person naloxone training please contact PARN (Peterborough AIDS Resource Network) or the John Howard Society.

Workplace Naloxone Training

Starting December 2022, Ontario’s Workplace Naloxone Program is providing support to employers who are required to comply with the naloxone requirements in the Occupational Health and Safety Act by providing free naloxone training for up to two workers per workplace and/or one free nasal spray naloxone kit per workplace.

Find more information on free naloxone kits for businesses. HKPR does not supply Naloxone kits to businesses.

Employers can visit the following participating program providers for more information on how to access free naloxone training and kits:

Need more information about Opioids and Training available check out the video below!

Don't Forget

Naloxone has an expiry date. The expiry date is written on the ampoules or vials (for injectable naloxone) or on the nasal spray device. Keep your kit in a cool, dry place. Avoid extreme heat or cold if possible. For example, keeping Naloxone on you is better than storing it in your vehicle’s glove compartment.  

If you have expired naloxone, get a new kit. You should return any unused or expired naloxone kits to your nearest pharmacy. 

This website uses cookies to enhance usability and provide you with a more personal experience. By using this website, you agree to our use of cookies as explained in our Privacy Policy.