New Bedford police and firefighters will soon be able to administer an effective antidote to combat the wave of heroin and opioid overdoses sweeping the region and state. Fire Chief Michael Gomes and Police Chief David Provencher reveal that the Fire Department expects to begin administering Narcan  the first week of May, while the Police Department is in the middle of training and plans to go live with the program June 1.

Currently, only emergency medical technicians can administer Narcan to a person having an overdose. EMT"s administer Narcan intravenously, by a shot or via a nasal spray.

State Department of Public Health officials estimate it has saved 2,000 lives. The antidote is used to combat respiratory depression caused by opioids.