FDA advisors have unanimously agreed to recommend Narcan be available without a prescription. If the FDA approves, people could buy the life-saving drug in supermarkets, convenience stores, and other outlets.
Narcan is the branded name of the medication Naloxone used in the event of an opioid overdose. Naloxone reverses an opioid overdose, blocking the opiate receptors in the brain and restoring breathing that has slowed or stopped during the emergency.
Naloxone should take two to three minutes to take effect, otherwise, more doses may be needed. This is one of the reasons why the drug’s pricing could be paramount in people’s decision to buy it.
Jessica Hulsey, executive director of the Addiction Policy Forum, told the approval committee, “Narcan needs to be priced affordably at no more than $20 per dose if it’s sold over the counter. This is because Narcan is packaged in single doses and it can take multiple doses to reverse an overdose from highly potent fentanyl. ”
Insomniac Events recently partnered with End Overdose, a nonprofit providing Narcan training and making it available online, to ensure no one overdoses at festivals.
Both organizations now encourage attendees to carry Narcan with them, provide Narcan at Insomniac festivals, and train ravers in how to use the emergency overdose medication.
End Overdose CEO, Theo Krzywicki told EDM Maniac about the partnership, “It’s one thing to say ‘you should be responsible’ but it’s another thing to be able to say ‘we welcome you to take action. If you see something, say something.’ We want to empower the community to have the medication [with them].”
The FDA is expected to make a final decision on approving Narcan for over-the-counter sale by March 29.
Watch the video below to find out what is naloxone and how it is used in the event of an opioid overdose: