Adapted from News Release published by the First Nations Health Authority:
Nasal Naloxone Available at no cost to First Nations in BC
As part of the ongoing strategy to reduce harm from opioid drug use and save lives, the First Nations Health Authority has added Naloxone nasal spray as a benefit, effective April 4, 2018. Nasal Naloxone is the same chemical compound as injection Naloxone. Both reverse the effects of an opioid overdose – the only difference is the delivery method.
Nasal Naloxone provides people with a fear of needles, or those living in communities where needles are stigmatized, with an easier option for responding to opioid overdoses.
Naloxone in BC
On September 16, 2016, the College Board removed emergency use Naloxone from the Drug Schedules Regulation to ensure there are no regulatory barriers to access the drug. Then on December 20, 2017, in response to the continually increasing death rate, BC’s Minister of Mental Health and Addictions, Judy Darcy, announced that take-home Naloxone kits would now be available at community pharmacies throughout BC through an expansion of the Take Home Naloxone Program.
This expansion only covers injectable forms of Naloxone, which is still the most widely available option.
This change reflects the disproportionate impact of the opioid crisis on BC’s First Nations Communities and ensures that BC’s First Nations Population has the same access to life-saving treatments as First Nations across Canada.
Accessing Nasal Naloxone
First Nations in BC may now request Nasal Naloxone directly from their pharmacy – they do not require a prescription from a doctor or nurse practitioner. Clients will need their Status number and Personal Health Number.
Coverage for Naloxone
Both injectable and nasal spray forms of Naloxone are covered by First Nations Health Benefits and claims are processed by the NIHB program.
Naloxone 0.4mg/ml one mL injection
|Naloxone 1mg/ml one or two mL injection|
|Narcan Nasal Spray|
|Naloxone Kits – Two ampoules/vials||09991460|
|Naloxone Kits – Three ampoules/vials||09991488|
|Nasal Naloxone Kits – 2 sprays||09991475|
For access issues, please contact an FNHA Benefits Support Representative toll-free at 1.855.550.5454 or email: HealthBenefits@fnha.ca
- News Release: Nasal Naloxone Listed as a Health Benefit for First Nations in BC
- Information for Health Professionals on Naloxone Availability
- News Release: Take Home Naloxone Kits Now Available at Community Pharmacies
- Resource Page: Use Emergency-Use Naloxone to Save a Life
- Take Home Naloxone Program
- Naloxone Site Finder