AG: Farmingdale State College among SUNY schools getting heroin antidote kits to treat overdoses

FILE: An exterior view of Farmingdale State College's

FILE: An exterior view of Farmingdale State College's Campus Center in Farmingdale on Aug. 28, 2013. Photo Credit: Newsday Jessica Rotkiewicz

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Farmingdale State College and 11 other State University of New York schools will be provided with kits to treat heroin overdoses, state Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman said Wednesday.

The state will use forfeiture funds to cover the $27,000 cost of 258 naloxone antidote kits for the 12 campuses, including training for school police officers.

Each kit contains two syringes of the antidote, two atomizers for nasal use, sterile gloves and instructions.

Schneiderman announced the program at a news conference at SUNY Purchase in Westchester County. He said Westchester was among the top 10 counties in the state for opioid-related hospitalizations in 2012.

"In just the past year we've seen multiple student overdoses on SUNY campuses, a tragic reminder that the crisis we've seen in the news is not so far from our students' dorm rooms," he said in a statement.

The attorney general's office did not have overdose data for individual schools but said the prime age group for heroin overdoses is 18 to 24 years. There have been several reports of overdoses at colleges, including an off-campus death near SUNY Oswego in April and an on-campus death at Binghamton University last year.

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Besides Farmingdale, the schools getting the kits are at Purchase, Potsdam, Buffalo, Cortland, Oswego, Albany, Geneseo, Adirondack, Canton, Utica/Rome and New Paltz.

Other schools in the SUNY system might have applications pending, and no SUNY school that applies will be denied funding, a spokeswoman for Schneiderman said.

"Given the abundance of opiates available in the region, funding for these kits by the attorney general's office is greatly appreciated," said Marvin Fischer, chief of police at Farmingdale State College. "Our university officers have been trained to use the kits, but we hope that we do not need to use them."

A spokesman for SUNY Old Westbury, Michael Kinane, said the college has an application pending.

Kinane said most of the school's police staff has already been trained through a Nassau health department program.

Stony Brook University did not apply for the grant because the campus is already equipped with Narcan and has trained personnel who can administer it, a spokeswoman said.

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