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Due to the constantly growing prevalence of opioid-induced overdoses across the state, the anti-overdose drug Narcan will still be discounted in NYC, while other regions continue to increase their Narcan supplies. The price cut agreement was officially released to the public by Attorney General Eric Schneiderman.
Narcan is the brand name of the narcolex drug that can reverse opium and opioid overdoses at a fast rate. This drug can simply be described as an overdose antidote. Its effect could have been easily seen last Thursday in Winchester, when police officers, who underwent Narcan training on Wednesday, saved the life of a 20-year-old male after responding to a call made from a home on East Washington Street.
The New York discount extension was made in partnership with Amphastar Pharmaceuticals. The company will provide a 20% rebate on Narcan doses, around $6, according to the contract signed with the Attorney General. This price cut effectively puts the price of one dose at $27, and it will remain at this level throughout the year of 2016.
Previously, Narcan was only allowed to be administered by trained personnel or it could be acquired only through the use of a prescription. But due to the increase in painkiller and heroin overdoses, these limitations have more or less dissolved in order for the drug to become more easily accessible.
Because of the increase in demand, Narcan doses can even rise up to $40 in price, making some people unable to benefit from its life-saving capabilities. Once a dose has been administered, the overdosed subject regains consciousness and can resume breathing normally in a matter of minutes. Due to this, some people have even started to call Narcan a miracle drug.
School districts from Pittsburgh have also increased their supplies of Narcan extensively, although, in some cases, its use has been prohibited since 2014. But due to a letter sent by the Secretary of Education, schools have started to build up their stocks of naloxone. It’s safe to say that if an overdose episode occurs, it’s better to have a way to save the person’s life on location instead of rushing him to the hospital.
In regards to the occurrence of heroin and painkiller overdoses, numbers have almost doubled in the past year, when compared to the period between 2010 and 2012. In some regions, overdoses have skyrocketed, almost tripling in the process. According to the CDC, these numbers will be increasing over the course of 2016 and the following years as well.
This is why the anti-overdose drug Narcan will still be discounted in NYC. By doing this, as well as increasing drug supplies, doctors hope that they will be able to save more lives over the course of 2016, hopefully lowering the mortality rate of heroin and painkiller overdoses accordingly.