ALABAMA (WHNT) — Narcan, the medication that reverses opioid overdoses is now available on the shelves at major retail stores. This comes 6 months after the FDA approved the medication to be sold without a prescription.
Narcan is said to have saved the lives of many who experienced an overdose and health officials say this could save even more lives with it now being readily available to the public.
“Narcan is pivotal in being able to reverse the effects of opioids on a person’s system,” said Lisa Olson.
Olson is the director of Project Freedom, an initiative that aims to educate Alabamians about Narcan, but they also work to distribute the medication to first responders. She says not only should police, firefighters, and EMS have the medication on hand, but it’s important for people to have Narcan as well.
Narcan can now be found on shelves at places like Walmart and Walgreens, along with CVS.
North Alabama pharmacies such as Athens Creekside Drugs and Salem Pharmacy are independent businesses that will also receive the life-saving medication.
Zeke Jackson is a pharmacist who co-owns both. He’s hoping people will get Narcan to have at their disposal without the stigma that may be associated with its purchase.
“As an opioid reversal agent it’s huge. I hope we can help people and I hope people aren’t scared to say hey, I should probably keep one of these – maybe not even for you, but maybe for a spouse or a friend,” Jackson told News 19.
The opioid epidemic hits home for Jackson after two of his friends suffered from overdose-related incidents. He says had Narcan been readily available, it could’ve prevented their deaths.
“You get that text message in the morning from a friend and you know it’s one of your friends that you knew, shocking depressing. This can save lives this really can save lives it’s not a joke, it’s very much needed,” Jackson said.
Jackson says his pharmacies will have Narcan available for people across the Tennessee Valley within the coming weeks.