Easier Access to Naloxone Linked to Fewer Opioid Deaths

Easier Access to Naloxone Linked to Fewer Opioid Deaths

Publication date: May 15, 2019

Between 2013 and 2016, nine states instituted laws that give pharmacists direct authority to dispense naloxone to anyone without a prescription.

Now, an NIH-funded analysis has found that within a couple of years of these new laws taking effect, fatal opioid overdoses in these states fell significantly [1].

In an effort to address this crisis, the federal government and many states have pursued various strategies to increase access to naloxone, which is a medication that can quickly restore breathing in a person overdosing on opioids.

But NALs in certain other states only give pharmacists indirect authority to dispense naloxone to people enrolled in certain treatment programs, or who meet other specific criteria.

In the new analysis, published in JAMA Internal Medicine, a team that included Rahi Abouk, William Paterson University, Wayne, NJ, and Rosalie Liccardo Pacula and David Powell, RAND Corp. , Arlington, VA, asked: Do state laws to improve naloxone access lead to reductions in fatal overdoses involving opioids?

The evidence shows that states allowing pharmacists direct authority to dispense naloxone to anyone have seen large increases in the dispensing of the medication.

Specifically, the analysis showed that in the year after direct authority NALs were enacted, fatal opioid overdoses in those states fell an average of 27 percent, with even steeper declines in ensuing years.

This finding highlights the importance of combining strategies to improve naloxone access with other proven interventions and access to medications aimed to treat opioid addiction.

Concepts Keywords
Addiction Drugs
Alaska Naloxone
Arlington Opioid use disorder
California Drug overdose
Causation Fentanyl
Connecticut Heroin
Correlation Take-home naloxone program
Criminal Justice Organic compounds
David Powell RTT
Epidemic Opioids
Fentanyl Pharmaceutical industry leaders
Healthcare
Heroin
Hinge
Idaho
JAMA
Mexico
Naloxone
Nasal Spray
NIH
North Dakota
Oklahoma
Opioid
Opioid Addiction
Opioid Epidemic
Opioids
Oregon
Overdose
Pain
Pain Management
Painkillers
Pharmaceutical Industry
Pharmacy
Physician
RAND
Receptors
Respiratory Arrest
Society
South Carolina
William Paterson University

Semantics

Type Source Name
drug DRUGBANK Naloxone
gene UNIPROT FBXW7
disease MESH Communities
gene UNIPROT CD5L
gene UNIPROT CD69
gene UNIPROT DNMT1
gene UNIPROT AKR1A1
gene UNIPROT ARMC9
gene UNIPROT IMPACT
drug DRUGBANK Diamorphine
drug DRUGBANK Fentanyl
gene UNIPROT NR4A2
gene UNIPROT ALG3
gene UNIPROT F11R
gene UNIPROT YES1
drug DRUGBANK Spinosad
gene UNIPROT LARGE1
disease MESH emergency
disease MESH multi
gene UNIPROT SCN8A
gene UNIPROT COL9A2
gene UNIPROT COL9A1
gene UNIPROT COMP
gene UNIPROT COL9A3

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