Nov 1, 2022 - News

Iowa distributes thousands of naloxone kits to businesses and schools


A Narcan nasal overdose kit. Photo by: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

The Iowa Department of Public Health has handed out thousands of free naloxone kits across the state since starting a new community program in February.

Why it matters: In 2021, there were 258 opioid-related deaths in Iowa, up from 213 in 2020 and 157 in 2019, according to the department.

  • But that number would be much higher if Naloxone did not become prevalent in recent years, according to a report by the IDPH.
  • Naloxone is a rapid-working medicine that reverses an overdose by "ejecting" opioids from receptor sites on the brain.

Flashback: Iowa launched a new initiative in February that provides naloxone spray kits to certain businesses, organizations and schools that request them.

  • Eligible places include gas stations, restaurants, bars, libraries, event venues and community service providers.
  • It's funded through the State Opioid Response Grant.

By the numbers: As of the beginning of October, IDPH has passed out 2,385 kits.

  • 758 kits have been sent to 145 businesses and organizations.
  • Six schools have received 27 kits.
  • 100 law enforcement and emergency personnel locations have gotten 1,600 kits.

How to get naloxone: People can get free naloxone for their homes without a prescription. Participating pharmacies across the state can be found here.


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