PHOENIX, May 23, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Attorney General Mark Brnovich and State Representative Heather Carter joined CVS Health (NYSE: CVS) today in announcing an important step to increase access to the opioid overdose-reversal medicine naloxone by making it available without a prescription at all CVS Pharmacy locations in Arizona. Pharmacists in Arizona will use prescriptive authority to dispense the life-saving medication to patients without the need for a physician visit to obtain an individual prescription. Prevention advocate Cindy Sierzchula and President of the Professional Firefighters of Arizona Bryan Jeffries expressed support for increased access to naloxone from the parent and first responder communities.
"Naloxone is a safe and effective antidote to opioid overdoses and by expanding access to this medication in our Arizona pharmacies, we can help save lives," said Robert Marshall, Regional Manager for CVS Pharmacy in Arizona. "CVS Health is dedicated to addressing and preventing prescription drug abuse in the communities we serve and we believe the step we are announcing today will give more people a chance to get the help they need for recovery."
"The opioid epidemic is an urgent public health crisis facing Arizona and the entire country," said Attorney General Mark Brnovich. "We want to ensure that Arizona families who have loved ones struggling with addiction have access to Naloxone because it saves lives."
"As a lawmaker, it's always rewarding to see the policy decisions we make put into practice," said Representative Heather Carter. "The main purpose behind the legislation I sponsored was to get this medication in the hands of a person who may have an opportunity to save a life. I'm here today to recognize a critical step toward achieving this goal."
Today's naloxone announcement builds on CVS Health's longstanding commitment to helping communities address and prevent drug abuse. In 2015, CVS Health launched a community outreach program called Pharmacists Teach, which brings CVS pharmacists to local schools to talk to students about the dangers of drug abuse. More than 250,000 students across the U.S. have already taken part in the program, including nearly 8,000 students in Arizona. High school teachers and administrators can learn more about bringing Pharmacists Teach to their school at www.CVSHealth.com.
CVS Health has also joined with the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids to create the Medication Disposal for Safer Communities Program, which donates disposal units to local police departments, providing a safe and environmentally friendly way to dispose of unwanted medication. Police departments in Arizona can apply to receive a drug collection unit at www.cvs.com/safercommunities. Additionally, CVS Health has launched digital resources on its website CVS.com that give patients and families a single destination to learn more about drug abuse prevention.
With the addition of Arizona, CVS Pharmacy now dispenses naloxone to patients without an individual prescription in these 41 states: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia and Wisconsin.
About CVS Health
CVS Health is a pharmacy innovation company helping people on their path to better health. Through its nearly 9,700 retail locations, more than 1,100 walk-in medical clinics, a leading pharmacy benefits manager with nearly 90 million plan members, a dedicated senior pharmacy care business serving more than one million patients per year, expanding specialty pharmacy services, and a leading stand-alone Medicare Part D prescription drug plan, the company enables people, businesses and communities to manage health in more affordable and effective ways. This unique integrated model increases access to quality care, delivers better health outcomes and lowers overall health care costs. Find more information about how CVS Health is shaping the future of health at https://www.cvshealth.com.
Director of Media Relations, Office of Attorney General Mark Brnovich
SOURCE CVS Health