The price of naloxone is increasing at a time when the need for the opioid overdose antidote is growing, CNBC reports.
Public officials say the price of naloxone is limiting how much they can purchase, which is potentially costing lives of people who are overdosing on heroin, fentanyl and prescription painkillers.
“Why should we be priced out of a lifesaving medication at a time of public health emergency when we need it the most?” said Baltimore City Health Commissioner Dr. Leana Wen. “It’s unethical and inhumane to deny our patients and our cities lifesaving medications, and watch hundreds of thousands of citizens in our cities die.”
She says her department has seen the cost of purchasing naloxone double in the last three years.
A new technology allows patients to safely dispose of unwanted or expired prescription painkillers at home.
Hooshang Shanehsaz, RPh, DPH, Director of Pharmacy at Cardinal Health, who co-directed a pilot study of the drug deactivation system, says patients found it easy to use.
A person using the Deterra® Drug Deactivation System simply puts their medication in a bag containing a carbon that bonds to pharmaceutical compounds when water is added. The person adds water and shakes it up to neutralize the active ingredient in the drug, explains Dr. Shanehsaz, who is Vice President of the Delaware Board of Pharmacy. The biodegradable bag can then be placed into the trash.
In the past, pharmacists have told patients to dispose of unused or expired medications by putting them in cat litter, sawdust or used coffee grounds.
These materials absorb some of the medication, but much of it still remains and can still be...