Overdose antidote naloxone now available on retail shelves: What to know
The "overdose antidote" naloxone is now on retail shelves, widely available for $44.99 – but who should have it and how do they work?
About 136 people die from an opioid drug overdose every day in the U.S., health officials say. Addiction experts say most drug overdoses happen at home.
"So having the kit in your home that's easy and accessible will help you help that person until emergency personnel is on the way," Stamford Cares manager Gigi Chaux said. "We need every tool available now."
Chaux says the naloxone kit comes with two units, and it's easily manageable for anyone to use. She says only two nasal sprays are needed, the dose will bind to the opioid receptors in the brain and block the opioid effects.
"Within a matter of minutes, that person will come back to breathing and it will give you enough time so emergency personnel can make it to that person," says Chaux.
Chaux says Narcan kits can now be purchased over the counter at CVS and Walgreens. Some customers may also be eligible for a free kit through the addiction services at Stamford Cares.
Narcan's manufacturer, Emergent BioSolutions, reported it will be lowering the cost for certain community groups, first responders, and state and local governments.
Some insurance and state Medicaid programs also cover the full cost of the life-saving medication.