Pubdate: Wed, 11 Jan 2017
Source: Edmonton Journal (CN AB)
Copyright: 2017 The Edmonton Journal
Author: Clare Clancy


An Edmonton DJ says he wants a "call to arms" to encourage artists and
venues to carry naloxone kits in an effort to curb the number of
opioid-related deaths in the city.

Dragan Jargic, who performs as DJ Dragon, said he recently picked up one
of the injectable packs used to combat fentanyl as a harm-reduction

"I took it upon myself as a personal thing to make sure there's one kit
around," he said. "So many people are unwittingly using fentanyl.

"It's at a point where you really don't know what you're buying anymore."

Jargic, who has been part of Edmonton's electronic music scene for 30
years, said whether performing at a wedding or rave, DJs might save a life
if they carry a kit.

"This isn't a street drug, it's in every walk of life," he added.

Sewing Machine Factory, a music venue on 82 Avenue and 96 Street, is one
Edmonton venue to add a naloxone pack to its first aid kit.

In the first nine months of 2016, 338 Albertans died from an opioid drug
overdose. Alberta Health said 193 deaths were related to fentanyl.

Jargic, 47, picked up his kit at a Walmart pharmacy and said it was an
easy process - pharmacies can provide the prescription on site.

"The pharmacist tells you how to draw the medicine into the syringe," he
said. "It's about finding that person who is (overdosing) in time to get
them more assistance ... the kit gives you a mouth-to-mouth piece that
protects you and the other person if you need to do CPR."

He isn't worried about liability issues, which have been among the
concerns voiced by his peers, he said. "The person can't give you consent
.. because they're in a medical emergency."

Jargic added that he doesn't want to encourage drug use, but says the
prevalence of opioids is a fact of life.

"Of course abstinence is the best policy but it just doesn't happen," he
said. "It could be the last time you ever take that pill."
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