MIDDLETOWN, Conn. (WTNH) – Business owners learned an important lesson Tuesday morning. It was not your usual Middlesex Chamber of Commerce meeting. Dozens of employees, in-person and online, all learned about opioid abuse and how to stop it.

“We are facing a very high opioid epidemic here in our nation,” explained Charles Mitchell, the Recovery Employment Program Coordinator for the Middlesex Chamber. “Not just nation, but state-wide, city-wide, town-wide.”

Which makes it a business-wide problem. The Alliance for Prevention and Wellness did the teaching about how to spot signs of drug use, and what to do in case of an overdose. The answer there is Naloxone or Narcan, the drug that can reverse an opioid overdose. It had some on this webinar ready to run out and buy it.

“So, this is all very, very new to me, but now I feel I need to have a couple of doses in a couple of different buildings just in case,” said one business owner.

The presentation all those businesses got is very specific about how exactly to administer Narcan. Most of them probably did not think they needed to know that as recently as a couple of years ago. Now they do, for one very specific reason: The prevalence of fentanyl.”

“There’s a very much increased need, not only just for the Narcan itself, but the information that is needed to make our communities aware of the dangers of fentanyl,” Mitchell said.

There are still a lot of questions as businesses figure out how best to respond to the opioid epidemic, but it is important to remember that reversing the overdose is far from the last and only step.

“Narcan is not the overall solution, but is a temporary solution to keep someone alive until they can get immediate medical attention,” Mitchell said.

An employee needs rehab, counseling, and support to get back to being a productive member of the team.