The Wolf Administration will provide naloxone for free to any Pennsylvanian who wants it at nearly 80 locations across the state, primarily at state health centers and county/municipal health departments, on Thursday, December 13 from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., as part of the administration’s ongoing effort to reduce the number of opioid overdoses and get residents into treatment.
“The life-saving medication naloxone is essential for all of us to have on hand, particularly if you have a loved one suffering from opioid-use disorder,” Governor Tom Wolf said. “We want to ensure that through this opportunity for free naloxone, we can save more lives and get more Pennsylvanians into treatment. Keeping naloxone in your home, work or even in your car can make the difference between someone getting into treatment or dying from this disease.”
Naloxone is a medication that can reverse an overdose caused by an opioid by blocking the effects of opioids on the brain. Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine issued a standing order prescription to any Pennsylvanian to get naloxone at a pharmacy for anyone who may need it.
“Naloxone has one function: to reverse the effects of opioids on the brain and respiratory system and save someone’s life," Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine said. “It is impossible to get someone in to treatment who is dead. Every Pennsylvanian has a role to play as a potential first responder and can save a life by having naloxone on hand and using it if they come across someone who has overdosed.”
Since November 2014, more than 20,000 people have been revived with naloxone by police officers and EMS providers in Pennsylvania.
“One of the biggest misconceptions of individuals battling substance use disorder is that they want to die, when the vast majority of overdose deaths are accidental,” said Drug and Alcohol Secretary Jen Smith. “We do not stand a chance in overcoming this epidemic if we are unable to help individuals into treatment. I encourage everyone to take advantage of this opportunity to help their loved ones in their time of need.”
In addition to being able to get naloxone for free on Dec. 13, it is available at most pharmacies across the state year-round. Naloxone is available to many with public and private insurance at pharmacies for free or at a low cost.
Additional information on Stop Overdoses Week and naloxone can be found on the state’s website at www.pa.gov/opioids.
Naloxone kits will be distributed for free between 11:00 AM and 7:00 PM unless otherwise noted on December 13 at the locations below. No appointments are necessary.
· Lehigh County State Health Center – 3730 Lehigh St., Suite 206, Whitehall, PA 18052
· Allentown City Bureau of Health – Alliance Hall, 245 North 6th St., Allentown, PA 18102 from 11 am to 5 pm
· Northampton County State Health Center – 1600 Northampton St., Easton, PA 18042
· Bethlehem City Bureau of Health – 10 E. Church St., Bethlehem, PA 19404
· Berks County State Health Center – 625 Cherry St., Room 401, Reading, PA 19602