Why Don’t More Police Carry the Opioid Antidote?

Narcan1-1200x800The answer is cost. While more law enforcement departments have officers carrying naloxone to reverse opioid overdoses, nationwide the amount has not reached the “saturation point” primarily because of costs.

As reported by Governing:

Some local governments argue that their emergency medical services are better equipped to administer the drug, making it redundant for police to carry it. But the most frequently cited reason for not equipping police? Costs. Not only do officers need to be trained in opioid reversal, but the price tag for naloxone can be forbidding. While some police departments have managed to get the cost of the nasal spray down to $75 for two doses, a single dose of the newest iteration, an auto-injector, is priced at $4,500 before rebates or discounts. “We’ve seen some departments [in North Carolina] that just can’t afford to equip a thousand officers with it,” Childs says.

The article cites data from the North Carolina Harm Reduction Coalition which found that of the nation’s 18,000 police agencies nearly 2,500 have naloxone programs.

Read Governing for more information.