FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders made an announcement Thursday morning that more than 15,000 naloxone kits will be distributed across the state.

“What we’re doing today is certainly a positive step in the right direction. It’s still a sad thing that it has to take place at all,” said Sanders.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says around 500 teenagers died from a drug overdose each year from 2010 to 2019. It can take mere seconds for a child to take something they shouldn’t and overdose.

Naloxone is a quick-acting medicine administered to someone who is overdosing on opioids. With naloxone already in schools, the spokesperson for Fayetteville and Springdale says SROs and nurses both carry Narcan, a nasal spray option for naloxone.

Larry Kenemore has experience administering naxolone as a paramedic. Now he works with the local Rotary Action Group for Addiction Prevention.

He says seconds count in an emergency like an overdose.

“There’s seconds and minutes that are going by, whether the teachers can be trained, and they can have it in the classroom, in the drawer, in the classroom. It’s readily available. That’s where it needs to be. Teachers can save lives. They can,” said Kenemore.

Sanders signed the Naloxone bill back in May to require naloxone or Narcan kits in high schools and colleges. It will take effect on January 14, 2024.