A community initiative by Heart2Heart CPR that provides FREE training and supplies to people likely to encounter opioid poisoning. Written by: Nick Rondinelli, Owner of Heart2Heart CPR.
Heart to Heart First Aid CPR Services Inc., is proud to present a Johnston-Brais Initiative called “Peer Support Responder.” This new and FREE training program is our response to the current increase in preventable opioid-related fatalities. We recommend this training for those who are most likely to encounter, witness, or experience opioid poisoning. It may include people who use drugs and their peers.
Our goal is to save lives by providing FREE overdose response training and FREE supplies/PPE to 100 peer responders in Downtown Toronto East starting June 1, 2021. With proper training, supplies and full PPE, Peer Support Responders can bring advanced life-saving knowledge and skills directly to populations most at risk.
Each responder will receive a FREE Red Cross emergency response backpack that includes a Bag-Valve Mask with HEPA filter, hard-case pocket mask, mini-first aid kit and PPE (KN95 mask, gloves, gown, face shield, eye protection).
In the last Drug Alert issued by Toronto Drug Strategy (May 7th, 2021) it states:
“Over the last five days, Toronto Paramedic Services have attended one of the worst clusters of suspected opioid overdose-related calls involving deaths since we began monitoring this data in 2017. Preliminary data show that from May 2 to 6, 2021, paramedics attended 13 fatal suspected opioid-related overdose calls, including five fatal calls on May 6th, which is the highest daily number of fatal calls on record since we began monitoring this data.”
Our record-breaking opioid fatalities will continue to plague our community and marginalized populations unless we can significantly change the trajectory for people using drugs to NOT use alone. Properly trained and equipped Peer Support Responders can monitor their peers (and each other) safely. In addition, they can provide emergency response care (with full PPE and protective equipment against aerosol generating procedures).
This initiative is 100% sponsored by Heart to Heart First Aid CPR Services Inc through its social branch called the Johnston-Brain Initiative. It’s our way of giving back to our community that has given so much to us for 22 years.
We are currently accepting 100 responders for this first round of training in Downtown Toronto East. We kindly request that you share this opportunity with any organization or person who you feel will benefit from our program.
Visit the webpage below to watch a brief video about the program and learn about the positive results from our pilot course. You can also see our upcoming course dates and register online. Our first three courses are already sold out. This training course will fill up quickly as it is in high demand.
We are an essential service, and our health and safety training can run during current lockdown restrictions. We practice strict COVID-19 safety precautions during all training courses.
For more information, please visit www.heart2heartcpr.com/peersupport.