This 8-year-old knows how to use a controversial overdose revers - WDRB 41 Louisville News

This 8-year-old knows how to use a controversial overdose reversal drug

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Audrey Stepp shows us how to use Evzio on her stuffed lamb. Audrey Stepp shows us how to use Evzio on her stuffed lamb.

SHEPHERDSVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) --  A Shepherdsville third grader knows how to use a drug that reverses an overdose and she’s only eight-years-old.

At her kitchen table, Audrey Stepp shows us how to use a new Naloxone device.

“If to inject, place black box against outer thigh,” it says.

The small, black and white voice-automated device talks you through how to administer the life-saving drug.

“It was so simple a kid could do it,” Audrey’s mom Jennifer Punkin-Step said. “She asked to be trained.”

The reason behind it was simple.

“Because I wanted to save a life,” Audrey said.

“Audrey's no stranger to this stuff. Ever since she was born, this is what she’s known,” Punkin-Stepp said. “The addiction was in our family.”

Audrey's older brother has battled his addiction for years.

“His disease got worse. So ever since she's been born that’s all she knows is addiction unfortunately,” Punkin-Stepp said.

Punkin-Stepp, who founded the Bullitt Opioid Addiction Team, often finds herself disappointed with adult resistance to be trained with Naloxone. So when her daughter asked to learn, she wished she thought of it sooner.

Audrey showed us how to use Evzio on her stuffed lamb.

“Press firmly and hold in place for five seconds. Five, four, three, two, one -- injection complete,” it said.

“To me it's no different than someone learning CPR. It's no different than someone learning how to use an epi-pen,” Punkin-Stepp said.

She taught her daughter three different methods to give Naloxone. The practice Evzio does not contain the drug or a needle.

“It was easy to learn,” Audrey said.

Punkin-Stepp wants people to realize the overdose reversal drug isn’t just for heroin addicts. It can be used for any opiate based medicine.

“If you have an elderly person in your family...they may get confused with their routine and they may forget how much medication they've taken. If they overdosed this product can help them, can help save a life,” Punkin-Stepp said.

She hopes training her daughter also acts as drug prevention and starts a conversation that otherwise, might not have happened.

“When they get to the point that they're in school and maybe the peer pressure comes in, they're going to know upfront what the dangers of drugs are,” Punkin-Stepp said.

Various forms of Naloxone can be picked up at the pharmacy with a doctor’s prescription. It’s also available through Kentucky Harm Reduction Coalition, but a training class is required.

Punkin-Stepp plans to hold a training session Nov. 21 to teach children how to use Naloxone. More information will be available on the upcoming event  on the Bullitt Opioid Addiction Team Facebook Page.

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