Pharmacy student saves a woman from an overdose

Pharmacy student saves a woman from an overdose

Sasha Heyneman initially traded the young woman lying on the lawn of a local rehab center on a frosty Thursday night for a Halloween decoration that fell from a tree.

Note: This story was originally published in the Idaho State Journal.

It was after 10pm when Heyneman, 29, and his partner, Arthur, were driving to his parents’ house to pick up his dog, Washburn. On the return trip, as they passed the rehabilitation center at 5230 W. Moonlight Mine Road, Heyneman noticed the figure’s bare arm in the lawn.

The fourth-year pharmacy student from Idaho State University then stopped and put her medical training to work, almost certainly saving the life of someone who was taking an opioid overdose.

Heyneman asked Arthur to stay in the car with the window down, believing that a man’s voice might frighten the woman. Despite the temperature being around 35 degrees, the woman wore only pants and a shirt. She was unresponsive and trembling, which worried Heyneman.

“I was cold enough to shiver and had a jacket on,” said Heyneman. “It must have been so cold out there.”

Heyneman initially spoke softly to the young woman. Then he turned up the volume to a cry, trying to get the young woman’s attention. There was still no answer.

Heyneman ran to the door of the rehab center, where he could hear the TV inside. A certified nursing assistant opened the door. CNA and another family member came out to investigate and confirmed that the young woman was not a resident.

Some residents helped the woman to enter. She was tripping and her eyes were rocking.

“With my training I realized it could be a possible opioid overdose,” said Heyneman.

She ordered residents to find their first aid kit and bring her some Narcan, a drug used in the treatment of opioid overdoses. When some of the residents were hesitant, Heyneman explained that administering Narcan would pose no additional risk if she was wrong in her assessment of an opioid overdose.

CNA administered Narcan nasal spray. Heyneman said CNA remained calm and was well prepared for the situation. Within about 30 seconds, the young woman was regaining consistency, answering some basic questions. Residents called the emergency health services.

Heyneman worked as an intern at Madison Memorial Hospital in Rexburg. Earlier that day, Heyneman was called to have an emergency infusion at the hospital. She was so nervous that her hands were shaking. She felt calm and did not hesitate, however, during the entire ordeal with the young woman.

Officials from the Bannock County Sheriff’s Office confirmed that investigations into the young woman’s situation are closed. Sheriff Tony Manu attributed to Heyneman the thought of her composed of her.

“I think it’s nice for her. Obviously she knew what to do, “Manu said.

The sheriff added that opioid overdoses are occurring “more and more”.

Heyneman’s mother, Catherine Cashmore, is extremely proud of her daughter and considers herself lucky to have chosen that time to pick up Washburn.

“How many people would have stopped? She stopped and went out to check, ”Cashmore said. “There just aren’t many people who would.”

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.