The sale of Narcan is on the rise at Big Y stores across western Massachusetts.
In a surprising move by many, Big Y recently began offering Narcan without a prescription at all of it's Massachusetts and Connecticut pharmacies.
With just a few weeks into the new program, the Springfield-based grocery store chain said more and more people are taking advantage of the new program.
"In Massachusetts, we have to have a standing order signed off by a physician. We have a standing order available. There's a copy in every pharmacy, every manager on record has signed it. We've submitted it to the state so now any time a patient or caregiver thinks they need to have Narcan on hand they can just walk up to a pharmacy and ask for it," said Manager of Pharmacy Operations, Jennifer Salvon.
This may seem like an odd place to find an overdose reversing drug, Salvon told Western Mass News the decision to carry Narcan was about saving lives, and allowing patients the opportunity to seek long term treatment.
"Big Y's offering this because they recognize, along with the rest of the country, that the opioid addiction is at epidemic proportions and offering this can hopefully save some lives and combat this epidemic," Salvon noted.
All pharmacists had to go through specific training.
"We have all gone through training so that we can help give the caregiver directions on how to administer it should the need arise," she added.
Now that word is getting out, more and more people, she said, are stepping forward.
"Most insurances do cover it, depending on the formulation you get it could have several different co-pays," she explained.
Narcan is the brand name, but Noloxone does come in a generic, less expensive form either through an injection, or a nasal application.
Western Mass News was told Narcan can cost anywhere between $40 to $150.
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