1,300 Ohio Pharmacies Now Offer Overdose Antidote Without Rx

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COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – The state pharmacy board says two-thirds of Ohio’s retail pharmacies now offer the drug overdose antidote naloxone without a prescription.

Giant Eagle and Rite Aid stores were recently added to the list, increasing the number to 1,374 pharmacies in 84 of Ohio’s 88 counties. The counties not represented are Holmes, Morgan, Noble and Vinton counties.

Officials pushed to expand access to the reversal drug to curb increasing overdoses and deaths attributed to heroin and stronger drugs, such as fentanyl. A law signed last year lets pharmacies distribute naloxone to at-risk opioid users or their relatives or friends without a prescription.

It’s sometimes known by the brand name Narcan. It can be administered before emergency responders arrive and isn’t harmful if a person hasn’t actually overdosed on heroin or similar drugs.