Naloxone, also known as Narcan, is a drug that reverses an opioid overdose quickly. It is what is called an opioid antagonist. This essentially means that it co it combines itself with the opioid receptors in your brain and body and reverses and blocks the effects of other opioid drugs. Naloxone has the ability to restore normal breathing if their breathing is shallowed or has stopped due to an overdose. Naloxone can reverse the effects of opioids such as heroin, fentanyl, oxycodone, hydrocodone, codeine, and morphine.
Why Naloxone Has Been so Hard to Get?
Unfortunately, the biggest reasons for poor access to naloxone are the stigma attached to it, the pharmaceutical business market forces, and questions about the liability of legally prescribing it to people. The stigma attached to drug users makes a large contribution to the ill-fated notion that opioid users and addicts just are not worth saving. This leads people to believe that the necessary resources and procedures to distribute naloxone are often left ignored and overlooked.
Why it Doesn’t Look Like it Will Change
Those who are actually at the most risk of an overdose are new drug users and people who begin using again after any period of abstinence such as people getting out of a rehabilitation facility or after someone has been released from prison. In some instances, to avoid overdose from happening, some treatment facilities are starting to consider the idea of sending their newly sober patient home with a naloxone prescription due to the high likelihood of relapse. Unfortunately, when it comes to health care providers and doctors, many of them are worried about being put in the position of legal liability due to very real fears of malpractice risk. The good side of this is many organizations have been created to educate and train health care providers so they know that prescribing someone with naloxone in order to reverse an opioid overdose does with the Food and Drug Administrations’ practice guidelines. When it comes to the business perspective of things, naloxone is seen as having a limited use and is a generic medication so it is not very profitable. The result is that a lot of pharmaceutical companies are unwilling to manufacture it causing scarcity of the product and product demand issues. Because of this, the naloxone supply shortage has ended up increasing the purchase price,e causing yet another wall in encouraging healthcare providers and other potential administrators to distribute it.
How Can Access be Increased?
Fortunately, enough 24 states in the US now have new naloxone laws that make it simpler for medical professionals to prescribe and dispense it to those who need it. This will be the most effective in getting it into the hands of more and more people who are in a place to administer it. The downside to this is that the laws vary from state to state. However, many states now allow naloxone to be distributed through community programs, hospitals, health departments, and other institutions like rehab centers. The most effective laws that need to be made include what is called third-party prescribing. This allows doctors to prescribe it to someone with no risk of overdose. This can be a caregiver of someone at risk, a friend, or even a bystander in a high-risk area for overdose. After all, naloxone is a non-addictive substance and does not pose a threat to abuse. Naloxone can’t just fall into the wrong hands. Any hands are better than none with the opioid problem we have right now.
Start Opioid Addiction Treatment at Evoke Wellness at Miramar!
If you or a loved one suffer from opioid addiction, the best thing to do, to avoid even needing a Naloxone shot, is to seek out addiction treatment. We at Evoke Wellness at Miramar, offer solution-focused treatment. We not only know what you are going through, but we know how to help. With our variety of evidence-based treatments, there is something that will work for anyone. It is time to give us a call and speak with one of our addiction specialists who will help you find the best treatment that works for you. They are available around the clock and all calls are free. Let us help you in your recovery.