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California lawmakers attempting to cap cost for Narcan

Posted by Sara Cooper | Sep 07, 2023 | 0 Comments

Assembly Bill 1060 written by Assemblyperson Liz Ortega would enforce insurers from MediCal to private types in giving full coverage for over the counter Naloxone or better known as Narcan.

This bill was introduced after the growing implementation of pharmacies offering the medication without a prescription, passed by the Food and Drug Administration this year. Major pharmacies, including CVS, Rite-Aid and Walgreens, are selling naloxone for $45 for two doses, according to their websites.

"Making Narcan available without a prescription makes sense and will save lives―but only if you can afford it," Ortega said in a statement. "No parent should lose a child because they couldn't afford a high pharmacy bill. California can be a leader here. By keeping the cost of this life-saving drug at $10 or less, my bill will empower thousands of parents, families, and community members to protect their loved ones should the worst happen."

Cause of death due to overdosing on fentanyl have been on the surge throughout the nation, including the state's Bay Area. At least 346 accidental deaths from January to May 2023 in San Francisco were from overdoses according to the Medical Examiner's Office, a 40 percent increase from last year in the same time period.

41 fentanyl-related deaths occurred in Santa Clara County in just May alone of this year, with a comparison of 161 passings in 2022.

The bill, which has passed through the Assembly, will be considered by the State Senate in the next two weeks, Ortega's office said Tuesday.

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