5 Replies to “Opioid overdose antidote Narcan will be widely available over the counter next week”

  1. How will the increased price of over-the counter Narcan impact the people who need it the most, particularly those already struggling with opioid addiction? Affordable and accessible Narcan is essential in addressing the ongoing opioid epidemic and saving lives. Opioid addiction disproportionally affects lower-income individuals who may not have the financial means to afford expensive medication that insurance won’t cover. If the price continues to increase, it could potentially create a barrier to access and prevent the people who need it the most from obtaining a life-saving medication. Following that, if Narcan is less accessible it can become increasingly difficult to administer in enough time and can lead to increased mortality rates. Families might become hesitant to purchase, which can lead to delays or no treatment during overdose emergencies. However, if the price of Narcan does continue to increase, it could become a situation in which insurance would potentially cover some of the cost. This does not help when it comes to the underinsured or uninsured, but it could mitigate the impact on some vulnerable populations. Oftentimes, government and non-profit organizations work to provide Narcan at reduced costs or for free in communities heavily affected by the opioid crisis. Some people might argue that even with a price increase, Narcan can be distributed through needle exchange programs, addiction treatment centers, and outreach efforts. This could potentially reach individuals who are at the highest risk of overdose.
    Overall, the potential negative impact on the individuals who need it the most cannot be ignored. Balancing the need for affordable access with the financial sustainability of medication production is a complex issue that requires careful consideration and collaboration among pharmaceutical companies, policymakers, and public health advocates.

  2. Is it possible that the recent easy access to the drug Narcan will encourage more drug use?
    There is a possibility that it could simply because Narcan is the only drug that counteracts the effects of a fentanyl overdose, and by making it easier to access, drug users may use that as justification to continue using and may even use it more. On the other hand, it also could not encourage more drug use, as there are still a few obstacles that can hinder people from buying it. These obstacles include the price $45 and the fact that it won’t be available on the shelf of the stores that it’ll be sold at. But despite these obstacles, the fact remains that this drug could be a little more easily accessible, especially considering how it is literally a life saving drug.

    1. Hi Jirah, I think you pose a very interesting question about the possibility of encouraging drugs. Although we are unable to truly test if this will be the case just yet, I believe that the life-saving benefits of Narcan outweigh the potential risks associated with making it accessible in stores. I, like most Americans, have been impacted by the opioid crisis. Although I am not an opioid user myself, I keep Narcan in my home and believe that anyone who has the ability to do so should as well.

    2. Hi Jirah, the question you pose is interesting, however I feel as though the price of Narcan will be deterrence enough to not encourage drug use. Much of the United States does not have the funds available to afford 45$ Narcan every time they need it. Meanwhile, Narcan gives those who want to help, the ability to. Drug users may not think they even need Narcan as most do not know they are going to overdose until they do. In a generalizing sense, drug users do not want to die they just want to get another high. Considering that factor is poses a further question on if drug users would typically be the buyers of Narcan, or if non-users are the purchasers of it? In my opinion I feel as though, if Narcan can save 10 lives versus none being saved, Narcan is the right answer.

    3. Hi Jirah, I understand where you are coming from as far as the possibility of drug users feeling more safe doing drugs. Which might lead drug users to do more drugs, but even if this is true Narcan should be easily accessible. It is better to be safe than worry about those who might need Narcan not having any way of getting it. I see where you say price might be an obstacle but thankfully many health departments in North Carolina offer cheap or free Narcan. I know it might not be sold in a variety of stores, but it is sold in Walmart which you see in many cities. Overall I believe it is better to have Narcan, than risk drug users using more heavily.

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