Pharmacists will give away NARCAN Nasal Spray in downtown Victoria Wednesday drawing attention to the accessibility — or lack thereof — of the life-saving medication.
Starting at 7 a.m., May 1, pharmacists will distribute the nasal sprays at 470 Belleville St. and educate passersby on the need for wide access to naloxone, said a release from the makers of the nasal spray in announcing the event. Pharmacists will continue to hand out sprays until 6 p.m. or until hand-outs are gone.
While British Columbia records the highest incidents of opioid overdoses per capita, availability and access to naloxone is not on par with other provinces, said the release. According to the release, any resident of Ontario and Quebec can go into any pharmacy and pick up a naloxone kit (either injectable or as nasal spray) for free without showing their health card.
Canadian clients of the Non-Insured Health Benefits (NIHB) program, eligible clients of Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC), as well as some Pacific Blue Cross and Alberta Blue Cross plans enjoy the same benefit, it read.
Given the strength of opioids available, and the need for multiple doses of naloxone, having access to a high dose naloxone is one more support in the fight against the opioid crisis, it read.
The product is commercially available and most insurance plans cover it.