FLINT, Mich. — Diplomat Pharmacy Inc. has begun providing naloxone, an antidote for opioid overdose, to Michigan residents.
Diplomat said late Tuesday that naloxone is available without a prescription at its retail pharmacy in Flint, Mich.
“Protecting the health and safety of our patients is what we do,” Gary Rice, executive vice president of operations at Diplomat, said in a statement. “We are committed to providing access to life-saving medication like naloxone in the communities we serve.”
In May, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services issued a standing order to enable pharmacists to generate naloxone prescriptions for eligible people, according to Diplomat. The order aims to ensure that people at risk of overdose or in a position to help such a person can obtain naloxone readily.
Naloxone blocks or reverses the effects of opioid-related drugs, which include extreme drowsiness, slowed breathing and loss of consciousness. The medication is often carried by first responders and caregivers of people with heroin addiction.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 1,000 Americans per day are treated in emergency departments for misusing prescription opioids.
The nation’s largest independent specialty pharmacy, Diplomat serves all 50 states and has 28 locations, including three specialty/retail pharmacies, in 20 states.