BOISE, Idaho — Albertsons Cos. announced that more than 1,600 of its pharmacies across 21 states have pharmacists with the ability to independently provide naloxone, a medication used to reverse the impacts of an opioid overdose, and to educate patients and caregivers about its use.
These pharmacies are located under store banners Acme, Albertsons, Carrs, Jewel-Osco, Safeway, Pavilions, Randalls, Shaw’s, Star Market, Tom Thumb, United and Vons, operated in the following states: Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Illinois, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Nevada, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, Washington and Wyoming.
“Our pharmacy teams are on the front lines in combatting the opioid epidemic, serving impacted patients and their families every day,” said Mark Panzer, senior vice president of pharmacy health and wellness, Albertsons Cos. “Our ability to bring naloxone to those who may be at risk of an overdose, and training patients and their caregivers on how to effectively administer the drug, may save lives. Our pharmacists are standing by as a resource for all patients and caregivers who may have questions about naloxone.”
The announcement comes after the recent recommendation from U.S. Surgeon General, Dr. Jerome Adams, that naloxone be more readily available for those at risk or able to help save lives. Narcan, an FDA-approved naloxone nasal spray for the treatment of a known or suspected opioid overdose, is available in all Albertsons Companies pharmacies.
Patients can obtain this life saving drug through a variety of channels, including a prescription from a physician. Specific state legislation, including standing orders and collaborative practice agreements, also allow patients to receive naloxone directly from many of their local Albertsons Cos. pharmacies.
As of April 2018, over 4,000 Albertsons Companies pharmacists were trained to educate and counsel on the use of Narcan. This training includes how to counsel patients on the availability and appropriateness of naloxone therapy, privately consulting with a patient or caregiver to determine eligibility for Narcan, how to use the product and what to watch for after use. Narcan is covered by most insurance plans, and resources are available to assist those without insurance coverage through public aid.