New training to allow IL pharmacists to dispense heroin overdose antidote

New training to allow IL pharmacists to dispense heroin overdose antidote

SPRINGFIELD, IL (KFVS) - An on-demand, web-based training is now available for pharmacists throughout Illinois seeking to dispense Naloxone, a drug widely used to counter the effects of a narcotic overdose, caused by drugs such as morphine and heroin.

By completing the Illinois State Opioid Antagonist Training Program, certified pharmacists will be able to dispense Naloxone without a prescription to those that might benefit most, including trained first responders, school nurses or any people at risk of overdose. The program is the result of a new law passed in September 2015, expanding access to the opioid antagonist drug Naloxone.

"Since 1999, the rate of overdose deaths involving opioids, including prescription pain relievers and heroin, has quadrupled in the United States," Bryan A. Schneider, Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) Secretary, said. "In 2014, Illinois experienced 1,705 opioid overdose deaths, according to CDC statistics.  With training now readily available, Illinois' licensed pharmacists can help stem the rise in opioid overdose deaths by ensuring this life-saving medication is at the ready should an emergency arise."

Standardized procedures for dispensing Naloxone were approved by the IDFPR, in accordance with the Departments of Public Health and Human Services. Under these standardized procedures, eligible pharmacists who have completed a certificate training program in opioid overdose prevention, and who are CPR certified, may dispense Naloxone and educate patients or concerned entities.

Illinois pharmacists are encouraged to register for the Illinois State Opioid Antagonist Training Program by visiting Naloxone standardized procedures for pharmacists may be found on IDFPR's webpage.

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