Nation’s top doc wants the overdose antidote widely on hand. Is that feasible?
April 19, 2018
When Surgeon General Jerome Adams issued an advisory calling for more people to carry naloxone — not just people at overdose risk, but also friends and family — experts and advocates were almost giddy.
This is an “unequivocally positive” step forward, said Leo Beletsky, an associate professor of law and health sciences at Northeastern University.
And not necessarily a surprise. Adams, who previously was Indiana’s health commissioner, was recruited to be the nation’s top doctor in part because of his work with then-Gov. Mike Pence, now the vice president. In Indiana, Adams pushed for harm-reduction approaches, which included expanded access to naloxone and the implementation of a needle exchange to combat the state’s much-publicized HIV outbreak, which began in 2015 and was linked to injection drug use.
Others cautioned, though, that his have-naloxone-will-carry recommendation is at best limited in what it can achieve, in part because the drug is relatively expensive.