The Biden administration is telling employers they should keep the overdose antidote naloxone on hand, Axios reports.
At an event to demonstrate how to use naloxone, health officials said the medication is highly effective if administered quickly after an overdose. But naloxone is only be useful if it is readily available and bystanders are comfortable using it, they said.
Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Xavier Becerra said the department’s headquarters in Washington, D.C., is stocked with naloxone nasal spray, with written instructions on its use and a verbal recording on how to administer it. He urged office buildings, restaurants and schools to do the same. “So just as you can pull that lever to alert people to a fire you should be able to pull down that nasal spray to make sure you can save a life,” Becerra said.
A nasal spray version of naloxone, Narcan, became available over-the-counter at major retailers for the first time this month, the article notes. A second over-the-counter version was approved this summer. It is expected to become available in early 2024.