Snyder order to make naloxone widely available in Michigan

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Gov. Rick Snyder has authorized the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services to issue a standing order pre-authorizing pharmacists to distribute the overdose reversal drug naloxone to eligible individuals.

Snyder’s office said Thursday that pharmacies that obtain the standing order will be able to dispense naloxone — often known by the brand name Narcan — to those at risk of an opioid-related overdose and to family members, friends, or others who might be able to help such individuals. Naloxone currently is only available to be administered by law enforcement and other first responders.

Health and Human Service Department chief medical executive Dr. Eden Wells says the shorter response time allowed by the standing order is a vital step in reducing opioid-related deaths in Michigan.