2016-03-31 / Front Page

NB Fire Chief assaulted after administering Narcan

Raises questions about safety issues for general public who administer drug

NB Fire Chief Rob CabanoNB Fire Chief Rob CabanoA North Babylon paramedic, who also serves as Chief of the North Babylon Fire Company, was assaulted and injured by a subject he was treating for a heroin overdose.

The incident occurred Fri., April 1 at approximately 10 p.m. on Marcy Street, North Babylon.

“I heard the call and got there within seconds,” said Chief Rob Cabano. “I found the individual to be blue, unresponsive and not breathing.”

Cabano immediately gave the patient, later identified as Christopher Forgione, 29, of March Street, 2 mg of naloxone, an FDA approved anti-opioid drug. It was administered through the nose, but the patient did not respond, said Cabano.

“I continued to treat him, assisting him with respiration and gave him another dose of naloxone; he started to breath again and his color came back and he became conscious.”

Forgione then began to struggle, striking and kicking Cabano with his fists and feet. “I attempted to restrain him until police arrived but took some severe blows to my head,” he said.

With the help of police, Forgione, 29, was eventually brought under control and placed under arrest, charged with a misdemeanor. He is due back in court in Central Islip tomorrow.

Police examined Cabano and determined that he has sustained injuries causing a potential concussion. He was placed in an ambulance and taken to Good Samaritan Hospital where he was treated. Following his release he was advised to stay at home resting.

“I have some lingering problems and hope they subside,” said Cabano, a lifelong resident of North Babylon firefighter for 20 years.

More important, however, said Cabano is his concern for the safety of others who administer this drug.

“It is not unusual for these patients to become conscious and be disoriented and aggressive and in my case, violent,” he said. “I had immediate assistance from the police, but I worry about the safety of family members and Good Samaritans who may get involved and be injured as a result.”

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