Houston-area mother who lost son to opioid overdose has hope for others as FDA approves over-the-counter use of NARCAN

HOUSTON – A drug designed to take pain away gave Sarah Hall her most painful memory.

“He was making music with his friends,” Hall said. “They were taking pills, and one of them ended up being fatal.”

In 2020, she lost her son Ethan to an opioid overdose.

“Had Narcan been there, been available, and been administered there’s a chance my son will still be here today,” she said.

Hall is one of the founders of Montgomery County Overdose Prevention Endeavor, known as M-COPE.

“We go out to schools, churches,” she said.

They teach people how to use Narcan, a nasal spray made to reverse an opioid overdose.

“You’re going to insert this into one nostril and hit the plunger,” she demonstrated. “One time— that’s it, you’re done.”

The Food and Drug Administration approved it for over-the-counter use on Wednesday.”

“This spray has really revolutionized things,” Dr. James Langabeer said.

Dr. Langabeer is a professor of emergency medicine and public health at UTHealth Houston.

“If it’s really an opioid, a heroin, an oxycodone overdose, fentanyl, this will work,” he said.

A win for parents like Hall.

“Four moms have taken our pain and made a purpose out of it, and we call it our superpower,” she said.

M-COPE has launched an initiative called be the one before 911. They offer free training to teach people in our community how to use Narcan.

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