Naloxone without a prescription
Since December 2016, Georgia pharmacists have been allowed to dispense naloxone (brand name Narcan) without a prescription.
This was originally a standing order from the Department of Public Health, but was codified by the legislature in February 2017.
The plain-English version of the relevant section of the
- Pharmacists and interns and externs under pharmacist supervision are authorized to dispense naloxone either (1) with to a prescription by a licensed practitioner; or (2) through the standing order of “Dr. Brenda Fitzgerald, Commissioner of DPH.”
- You must keep a copy of the standing order of Dr. Fitzgerald.
- You must keep a record of each prescription of naloxone you issue through that standing order, including the name of each purchaser, his or her date of birth, address, city, state, and ZIP Code. (Electronically is fine.)
- You must keep that record for at least two years.
- You are not required to submit information regarding each naloxone prescription dispensed to Georgia’s PDMP.
- You are not required to maintain naloxone in your biennial inventories.
- Hospital pharmacies are not required to treat naloxone as a controlled substance for purposes of recordkeeping and distribution.
What’s an “eligible person”?
It includes “family members, friends, coworkers and other persons in a position to provide assistance to persons experiencing an opioid related overdose.”
- A mother who knows her son has been using heroin.
- The head of security at the YMCA.
- The man who runs into your pharmacy because his girlfriend has just overdosed and is in his car outside.
Bottom line: Someone can now walk into your pharmacy, explain their situation (nurse, mother, etc.) and ask for some form of naloxone under the standing order.
Whether the naloxone is covered by the person’s insurance policy is something you’ll need to determine on a case-by-case basis, as with any prescription.