Another, Cheaper, Form of Naloxone Enters the Market

Yesterday, an article I wrote about Naloxone expansion on college campuses was published by HECAOD at Ohio State University. Naloxone is the name of the drug that is sold as Narcan by Amphastar Pharmaceuticals. Over the last three years, many states have pushed for its widespread use among emergency medical technicians and police officers. Thousands of lives have been saved by giving Narcan to people that are in the middle of an opiate overdose. Many officials, families and policy wonks have been advocating on behalf of Narcan for several years.

Last fall, Amphastar doubled the price of Narcan. It appeared to be a blatant money grab just at the moment that it was being used more. I appeared on NJTV in November of 2014, along with a police officer, to talk about the consequences from the price increase. The officer complained about how the price increase would put a strain on the town’s budget and how it might limit its use. Other advocates throughout the country concurred. While I agreed with that sentiment, I stated that “another company may enter the market and that will lower the price.”

I’m pleased to report that the FDA approved an easier to use version of Naloxone yesterday. Adapt Pharma has released an easier to use nasal spray that is also far cheaper than Amphastar’s.  From ABC News:

The Irish company said it will price Narcan at $37.50 per dose for all government, community and educational organizations, including law enforcement, fire departments and schools. That compares to prices ranging from $75 to $100 for existing injectable versions of the drug, though many buyers negotiate discounts.