US Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams issues advisory on opioid overdose-reversing drug — 5 insights

Written by Megan Wood | April 05, 2018 | Print  |

On April 5, U.S. Surgeon General Jerome M. Adams, MD, issued an advisory on HHS.gov regarding naloxone.

Here are five insights.

1. The advisory urged more Americans to carry naloxone, an opioid overdose-reversing drug. The drug comes in a nasal mist or injection form.

2. Most first responders possess naloxone, and Dr. Adams called for more people to do the same, especially family members and friends of those at risk of overdosing.

3. The advisory noted about 2.1 million people in the nation have an opioid use disorder. Between 2010 and 2016, the number of opioid-overdose deaths jumped from 21,000 to 42,000.

4. Every state has expanded access to naloxone, and many passed laws that protect healthcare professionals prescribing the drug and citizens who administer the drug to those in an emergency.

5. CNN reports the last advisory of this sort came out more than 10 years ago, recommending against drinking during pregnancy.

"It is time to make sure more people have access to this lifesaving medication, because 77 percent of opioid overdose deaths occur outside of a medical setting and more than half occur at home," Dr. Adams said in the advisory.

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