Where Can I Get a Naloxone Kit?
Naloxone is a medication that can quickly reverse the effects of an overdose from opioids such as heroin, morphine, fentanyl, carfentanil, and codeine. Opioids are most often prescribed for pain relief. However, highly-toxic synthetic opioids have now been found in samples of all illegal drugs except cannabis. Naloxone is available in British Columbia without a prescription and often given as an injection into an arm, buttocks, or muscle. Naloxone will only work on opioid-related overdoses, though it will cause no harm if there are no opioids in someone’s system. Naloxone should be given to an unresponsive person, particularly if they are breathing slowly or not at all.
B.C. has a Take Home Naloxone program in place to reduce the harm and deaths associated with opioid overdoses. The program provides training in overdose prevention, recognition, and first aid response.
You are eligible for the Take Home Naloxone program if you:
- Have a history of using substances particularly heroin , cocaine, crack cocaine and crystal methamphetamine
- Are likely to witness and respond to an overdose (not including health care professionals or clinics for staff use on patients).
- Are First Nations’ and living in BC. The FNHA’s First Nations Health Benefits plan will cover the cost. Learn more
If you are eligible for the Take Home Naloxone program, you can receive a naloxone kit at no cost, as well as overdose prevention and response training, at any program site. Visit the Toward the Heart site locator or call 811 anytime day or night to find a site near you.
People who are at risk of overdose, or who are likely to witness an overdose, can also obtain a no-charge Take Home Naloxone kit from participating pharmacies. Click here for a list of eligible pharmacies in B.C.
How to use Naloxone
Check out these links to learn more about naloxone and how to administer it:
- Toward the Heart: Overdose Survival Guide (PDF)
- Toward the Heart: Naloxone quick-learn
- Toward the Heart: How to Use Naloxone Video
- BC Pharmacists: Naloxone Brochure (PDF)
If you witness an overdose call 911 immediately and remember the Good Samaritan Drug Overdose Act provides some legal protection for individuals who seek emergency help during an overdose. Learn more here.