Butte Glenn Medical Society

Harm Reduction

Harm Reduction

“Harm reduction is a set of practical strategies and ideas aimed at reducing negative consequences associated with drug use. Harm Reduction is also a movement for social justice built on a belief in, and respect for, the rights of people who use drugs”

To learn more about harm reduction, click here


Naloxone is commonly referred as the opioid reversal drug. It can reverse and block the effects of other opioids. There are three forms of naloxone: Injectable, Auto injectable, Narcan Nasal Spray.

Quick Facts:

  1. Naloxone cannot be used to “get high” and has no harmful effects if the person is not overdosing on opiods.
  2. Naloxone has no effects on other drugs such as benzodiazepines or alcohol, which is why it is important to stay with the person in case they need extra doses or emergency medical care
  3. Those at risk of an opioid overdose and their family and friends should consider carrying naloxone. No prescription required at a pharmacy.
  4. For more information about naloxone:
    1. Naloxone
    2. NARCAN® Nasal Spray Instructions
    3. Harm Reduction Coalition Understanding Naloxone
    4. National Institute of Health: Opioid Overdose Reversal with Naloxone
    5. NEXT Distro Naloxone
For more information on preventing a prescription opioid overdose and how to respond, follow these links: Preventing prescription opioid overdose & here

Concepts and Principles of Harm Reduction

Good Samaritan Laws
California’s 911 Good Samaritan Law provides limited protection from arrest, charge and prosecution for people who seek emergency medical assistance at the scene of a suspected drug overdose
This law protects:
  • The person overdosing and the person calling for help
  • Possession of paraphernalia or other drugs

This law however does NOT protect against:
  • Selling, providing, giving or exchanging of drugs
  • Probation or parole violations
  • Other crimes, such as driving under the influence
  • Obstructing first responders
Links with more information on Good Samaritan Laws:

Do you or someone you know use opioids?

Visit https://www.nvhrc.com for more information about Nothern Valley Harm Reduction Coalition's Syringe Access Program.

In August 2019, the Butte-Glenn Medical Society Board of Directors approved by majority vote to support efforts to fund a Syringe Services Program. The letter that was shared during the public comment phase of the program's application period is here:

This letter refers to compelling data that demonstrates the safety and efficacy of harm reduction efforts: https://www.cdc.gov/ssp/

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