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INDIANAPOLIS — Indiana’s first naloxone vending machine was placed at the St. Joseph County Jail in South Bend on Tuesday, with 18 others to placed statewide, announced Governor Eric Holcomb.

The vending machines will be available for public use and dispense free naloxone kits.

Naloxone, also known as Narcan, is a medication approved to reverse an overdose from opioids and is given when a person shows signs of overdose to block the deadly effects.

“There is no single solution to ending this epidemic that has taken the lives of thousands of Hoosiers,” Gov. Holcomb said in a release. “We can, however, take thoughtful steps to help shake the scourge of addiction from our communities. Naloxone vending machines are a practical tool to prevent overdoses and save lives.”

Holcomb’s office said the vending machines are manufactured by Shaffer Distribution Company and programmed to dispense up to 300 kits. Each kit includes a single dose of naloxone, instructions for use and a referral to treatment for substance use disorder.

The Indiana nonprofit Overdose Lifeline, Inc.  is partnering with the Family and Social Services Administration Division of Mental Health and Addiction to identify jails, hospitals and other community sites interested in a vending machine.

There is no cost to entities that implement a vending machine. Overdose Lifeline will purchase the vending machines using federal grant funds totaling $72,600 made available through Division of Mental Health and Addiction, Holcomb’s office said.

Indiana reported a 32% increase in fatal overdoses during the 12-month period beginning in April 2020 and ending in April 2021, according to provisional data released in November by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Click here to learn more about Overdose Lifeline’s naloxone distribution opportunities or to request a free naloxone kit.