A group of pharmacists is handing out free NARCAN Nasal Spray kits across from the Legislature building and in front of the Steamship Pub and Grill from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Wednesday. (Matteus O’Connor/Victoria News Staff)

Pharmacists hand out free NARCAN kits in fight against opioid crisis

Across from the Legislature building until 6 p.m. today

It’s well known that B.C. is in the midst of an overdose epidemic and arming the public with knowledge is one way of fighting back but a group of pharmacists are taking it one step further by handing out NARCAN Nasal Spray Wednesday.

From 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. outside the Steamship Pub and Grill and across from the Legislature buildings, passersby can learn how to administer the nasal spray and take home their own NARCAN Nasal Spray kit including two doses of the spray.

Naloxone, one overdose antidote option, is currently available for free but only in the injectable form. Craig Plain, a pharmacist from Vancouver’s east side, says the added option of a nasal spray makes things a little easier on people.

READ ALSO: NARCAN Nasal Spray hand-outs in downtown Victoria aim to draw attention to opioid crisis

“It’s a needle free, concentrated dose and it’s all primed and ready to go — it’s really as simple as pulling the foil off the back, you’ve got the spray that goes up the nose, and you’ve just administered approximately five injections,”

The nasal spray is available through pharmacies but is only free to those in the Non-Insured Health Benefits Program across Canada and to all eligible clients of Veterans Affairs Canada as well as some private insurance plans.

READ ALSO: Opioid overdose claimed more than 3,200 lives in first nine months of 2018

“Outside of that, the take home injectable kits are part of the free program, theses are not part of that,” says Plain.

According to Plain the cost of the nasal spray will vary depending on the pharmacy, but he says the average cost is around $150 per kit.

Visit @victoria_news on Instagram for the full video.



kendra.crighton@blackpress.ca

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A group of pharmacists is handing out free NARCAN Nasal Spray kits across from the Legislature building and in front of the Steamship Pub and Grill from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Wednesday. (Matteus O’Connor/Victoria News Staff)

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