California Pharmacists to Dispense Overdose Reversal Drug
A few weeks ago, a number of towns in New Jersey began training paramedics on how to use the opioid overdose reversal drug called Naloxone (Narcan). Once they were trained, they were allowed to have it on hand in their ambulances. Thanks to this drug, paramedics in these New Jersey towns have already saved four people from overdosing. This life-saving drug is now catching attention and becoming more widespread.
A new law in California will now allow pharmacists to dispense Narcan to family members or those in close contact of patients likely to overdose. There will be strict guidelines for dispensing but there will not be a prescription needed. When people are overdosing, there is a short time span in which they could be saved. Paramedics don’t always make it in time. Allowing people close to high risk overdosers to have the drug on hand could possibly save many lives.
This law was widely supported by The Drug Policy Alliance and California Pharmacists Association, the California Hospital Association and State Assemblyman Richard Bloom. Bloom especially feels this is a major victory for the state of California and the health community. The community hopes more states will follow in suit.