Free Narcan coming to every health district in the Commonwealth

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — A drug that saves lives will soon be available for free across the state.

8News has learned Virginia is expanding a pilot program to battle the opioid epidemic. Up until now, only the health districts of Southwest Virginia, the Shenandoah Valley and Norfolk had Narcan available for free.

The Virginia Department of Health decided to provide the life-saving drug to health districts around the commonwealth as it discovered there are high-risk areas for opioid overdoses across the state touching every health district.

“We recognized we needed do something, not just ourselves but really a community-based effort so it’s not just the health department, but providing some sort of intervention so we can prevent some of these deaths,” says Christopher Gordon, Chief of Staff for Community Health Services with the Virginia Department of Health.

Narcan can be picked up for yourself friends or family members, no questions asked. Some local health departments are even bringing Narcan to area neighborhoods.

“Here in Richmond city, for instance, they have already gone out to Creighton Court,” Gordon said. “Last week, Friday, 25 people came and they dispensed 50 doses.”

Richmond Health District plans to hit all of the public housing communities. They are using EMS call sheets to guide them in their distribution.

State money and grants are funding the Narcan.

Click here for information on training sessions on how to use it properly.

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