Steuben County, (WENY) – As the opioid epidemic continues to rise across the country, Steuben County Public Health officials are trying to reduce the number of overdose fatalities in New York State.

In 2016 the Finger Lakes Region had 168 opioid overdoses.

“Opioid and heroin overdoses have just sky rocketed in the past decade. we're looking at an almost 300% increase since 2005, so it's a big problem that we're seeing in our area. For people to be able to prevent or reduce those opioid overdoses is definitely something that we want to stand behind,” said Lorelei Wagner, Education Coordinator at Steuben County Public Health.

Narcan has become the standard on-site treatment to prevent death, which can occur within minutes of a drug overdose. The training course that Steuben County Public Health is offering the public and other service providers such as fire departments and EMS, will teach them how to recognize an overdose, how to administer Narcan and additional tips on performing CPR.

“In 2008 we had 60 deaths in New York state related to opioid overdoses, in 2016 it was at 168, so we're looking at almost three times as many,” said Wagner.

Narcan comes in the size of nasal spray and it can easily be sprayed into the overdose victims nose.

The Narcan should block the brain receptors that the opioid is attached to and hopefully save a life.

In the event that drugs are in your possession during the time of an overdoes, New York's good Samaritan law in place protects the person who is administering the Narcan and those who have overdosed.

If you are interested in signing up for a training session, click here to contact Steuben County Public Health.