MorningRX: August 30, 2023


Narcan is set to be available at several drugstore and grocery chains in the US early next week, and Walmart announced a new "Testing and Treatment" program at its pharmacies in 12 states.

Narcan Set to be Available for OTC Purchases in the US

Naloxone HCI (Narcan) is set to be available at several drugstore and grocery chains across the United States by early next week, The New York Times reported. The treatment is the first over-the-counter opioid reversal medication approved by the FDA, though it has long been used by emergency personnel. Big box outlets, including Walgreens, CVS, Walmart, and Rite Aid, said the medication will be available for purchase both in-store and online. Emergent BioSolutions, who manufactures Narcan, suggests $44.99 as the price for a 2-dose box, but how much the medication will actually cost remains unclear.

“As a medical professional and mom who experienced the unthinkable and lost both of her sons to accidental overdose, I know you can’t put a price on peace of mind and there is no act too great to protect family,” Bonnie Milas, MD, professor of Clinical Anesthesiology and Critical Care at Penn Medicine, said in a release. “Picking up Narcan Nasal Spray at the store is not a sign that your family has “a problem,” in fact it shows you are prepared just in case.”

Walmart Announces New ‘Testing and Treatment’ Program

Walmart has a new program that will allow its pharmacists the ability to test and treat patients for strep throat, COVID-19, and the flu in 1 place, the company announced in a release. The program, which is currently available 7-days a week in 12 states, aims to offer full services to patients who would normally have to visit 2 or 3 different places. For example, a patient who tested positive for the flu would also be able to get a prescription for oseltamivir phosphate (Tamiflu) in the same Walmart. As of now, the service is cash-only, but Walmart said it’s working on being able to bill third party insurance plans.

John Ulrey, a pharmacist who works at a Walmart in Kansas, said in a release that “Pharmacists are starting to fill an important gap in the medical field. It’s going to change how pharmacists are thought of in the community!”

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