What is Naloxone

Naloxone, often known by its brand name Narcan, is an effective, non-addictive medication that reverses an opioid overdose. Within minutes of it being administered, the affected person is able to breathe again. Naloxone can be administered as a shot or nasal spray. Since it is not a controlled substance and has no potential for abuse, Naloxone is accessible and can be easily administered by anyone. However, give caution.

Can I get Naloxone without a prescription?

Since September 2015, Naloxone has been available in Minnesota without a prescription.

Can I be sued for administering Naloxone?

Minnesota passed a good Samaritan law that protects people who administer Naloxone, in good faith, from criminal and civil prosecution. (cite: https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/?id=604A.04)

Who can use it?

Naloxone can be administered by anyone. People with friends or family members that use opioids, or someone organizing emergency procedures for an organization/event, should consider getting a Naloxone kit.

How do I know when to use Naloxone?

Look for the signs of an overdose such as non-responsiveness, breathing slowly, not breathing at all, blue lips and fingernails, and gurgling.

What do I do after I administer Naloxone?

Naloxone can help restore breathing but is not a cure and cannot reverse an overdose completely. Call 911 immediately following signs of an overdose or overmedication.

What if the person who overdosed doesn’t wake up?

Mouth-to-mouth resuscitation can be given if possible. If the person who overdosed does not wake up within two to four minutes after receiving Naloxone, more can be given. This is typically why Naloxone comes in a two-pack.

How long does the Naloxone last in the system?

Naloxone usually works for thirty to ninety minutes, depending on the amount of opioids taken. Sometimes multiple doses of Naloxone are needed. Call 911 before you administer Naloxone, and be sure to stay with the person to assure that no more opioids are taken while you are waiting for the ambulance to arrive.

Does Naloxone have side effects?

Naloxone doesn’t cause harm if it turns out that overdose did not occur. Naloxone can cause drowsiness, dizziness, or fainting.

How much does Naloxone cost?

Naloxone is being provided free of charge through state and federal efforts. Learn more about where you can get free Naloxone 

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