‘A critical step.’ California offers free naxolone to qualified organizations. Here’s how

Qualifying organizations can now apply to receive free over-the-counter naxolone, an opioid reversal drug sold under the brand name Narcan, from the state.

First responders, community organizations, schools, hospitals and local governments are among those eligible to apply for a 4-milligram dose of naloxone nasal spray, bought at a lower market price, according to a news release from Gov. Gavin Newsom.

California contracted with Amneal Pharmaceuticals to buy the drug at a 40% reduction, according to an announcement of the purchase.

“By making Naloxone widely available and affordable, we are empowering communities and saving lives,” said California Health and Human Services Agency Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly, who heads the department providing the drug. “This is a crucial step in our ongoing efforts to tackle the opioid crisis head-on.”

The state bought about 24,000 units of the medication in May under the state’s initiative dubbed Naloxone Distribution Project. Since the project’s creation in 2018, more than 4.4 million units of Naloxone have been distributed.

Businesses and organizations that do not meet the state’s requirements to receive free naxolone can also apply to purchase the medication for $24 by visiting CalRx Get Naloxone’s website.