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DC Will Offer Overdose-reversing Drug, Naloxone, for Free at Select Pharmacies Beginning August 31, 2019

Friday, August 30, 2019

WASHINGTON, DC – As part of a pilot program and expansion of the current pharmacy standing order program, DC residents will be able to get the overdose reversing drug, naloxone, free of charge at select pharmacies in the District of Columbia. 

In 2017, there were 279 opioid-related deaths in the District. In 2018, there were 213 opioid overdose deaths. There were 72 opioid-related fatalities in 2019 as of May 31.

Death from an opioid overdose can be prevented with naloxone. Naloxone is a FDA-approved medication that temporarily reverses the effects of opioids such as heroin, fentanyl methadone and morphine. 

NARCAN® (naloxone HCI) Nasal Spray is an FDA-approved nasal form of naloxone to be used if there is concern for an opioid overdose.

“This pilot allows us to test and identify new channels of Narcan® distribution as part of our commitment to combat the opioid epidemic. Making Narcan® Nasal Spray more widely available to residents through our partnership with local pharmacies is also a big step forward in Mayor Bowser’s plan to reduce opioid use and misuse and to reduce opioid-related deaths by 50 percent by 2020,” said Dr. LaQuandra S. Nesbitt, Director, DC Health. 

While there are areas of higher use and opioid use disorder, pharmacies located in all eight wards will participate in the pilot program. The participating pharmacies are:

  • Morgan Pharmacy (3001 P Street, NW)
  • Grubbs Care Pharmacy NE (326 East Capitol Street, NE)
  • Grubbs Care Pharmacy NW (1517 17th Street, NW)
  • Grubbs Care Pharmacy SE (1800 Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue, SE)
  • Kalorama Pharmacy (1841 Columbia Road, NW)
  • Good Care Pharmacy (2910 Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue, SE)
  • Excel Pharmacy (3923 S. Capitol Street, SW)
  • CVS #22 (320 40TH Street, NE)
  • CVS #1340 (845 Bladensburg Road, NE)
  • CVS #1354 (2601 Connecticut Avenue, NW)
  • CVS #1360 (2834 Alabama Avenue, SE)
  • CVS #1364 (6514 Georgia Avenue, NW)
  • CVS #2834 (3031 14TH Street, NW)
  • Safeway #1445 (2845 Alabama Avenue, SE)
  • Walgreens #15360 (801 7TH Street, NW)
  • Walgreens #16049 – Howard University Hospital (2041 Georgia Avenue, NW)
  • Giant #384 (1535 Alabama Avenue, SE)

“On International Overdose Awareness Day, August 31, we want to raise awareness that overdose deaths are preventable and reduce stigma about substance use disorders to help combat opioid overdoses. If you use opioids or have opioids in your home, NARCAN® Nasal Spray should be there, too,” said Dr. Shauna White, Executive Director – District of Columbia Board of Pharmacy and Program Manager - Pharmaceutical Control Division in the Health Regulation and Licensing Administration at DC Health.

Additionally, if an opioid prescription is filled at one of the participating locations, that patient will also receive a NARCAN® kit. 

Pharmacy staff will distribute information on how to administer NARCAN® Nasal Spray and information on addiction treatment and recovery.

Naloxone can be easily administered by anyone who witnesses an overdose. NARCAN® Nasal Spray works within minutes, requires no assembly, contains pre-measured dose and is easy to use.

For more information about the District’s strategic plan to address opioid use disorder, please visit: livelong.dc..


The District of Columbia Department of Health (DC Health) promotes health, wellness and equity, across the District, and protects the safety of residents, visitors and those doing business in our nation’s capital.