Naloxone to be available at 80 sites statewide Dec. 13
The state will provide the overdose-reversing drug naloxone free to any Pennsylvanian who wants it on Dec. 13 at nearly 80 locations across the commonwealth, Gov. Tom Wolf’s office announced.
Distribution will be primarily at state health centers and local health departments and will be between 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. at most locations. It is part of the Wolf administration effort to reduce opioid overdoses and get residents into treatment.
“The life-saving medication naloxone is essential for all of us to have on hand, particularly if you have a loved one suffering from opioid-use disorder,” Mr. Wolf said in a news release Thursday.
Naloxone is a medication that can reverse an overdose caused by an opioid by blocking the effects of opioids on the
brain. Secretary of Health Rachel Levine issued a standing order prescription to any Pennsylvanian to get naloxone at a pharmacy for anyone who may need it.
“Naloxone has one function: to reverse the effects of opioids on the brain and respiratory system and save someone’s life,” Dr. Levine said in the release. “It is impossible to get someone in to treatment who is dead. Every Pennsylvanian has a role to play as a potential first responder and can save a life by having naloxone on hand and using it if they come across someone who has overdosed.”
Since November 2014, more than 20,000 people have been revived with naloxone by police officers and EMS providers in Pennsylvania.
“One of the biggest misconceptions of individuals battling substance use disorder is that they want to die, when the vast majority of overdose deaths are accidental,” said Drug and Alcohol Secretary Jen Smith. “We do not stand a chance in overcoming this epidemic if we are unable to help individuals into treatment. I encourage everyone to take advantage of this opportunity to help their loved ones in their time of need.”
Naloxone is available at most pharmacies across the state year-round and is available to many with public and private insurance at pharmacies for free or at a low cost.
Here are Allegheny County locations for the Dec. 13 naloxone distribution:
• Allegheny County Health Department Immunization Clinic, Hartley Rose Building – 425 First Ave., fourth floor, Downtown Pittsburgh, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
• Duquesne University Pharmacy – 1860 Centre Ave., Uptown
• Focus on Renewal Community Resource Center -420 Chartiers Ave., McKees Rocks
• Millvale Community Center – 501 Lincoln Ave., Millvale
• St. Peter’s Episcopal Church – 4048 Brownsville Rd., Brentwood
• St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church – 220 eighth St., McKeesport
• Turtle Creek Fire Department – 125 Monroeville Ave., Turtle Creek
More on Stop Overdoses Week, naloxone and distribution sites in other counties is available on the state website.