Current Research in Medicine

An Evaluation of Naloxone Use for Opioid Overdoses in West Virginia: A Literature Review

Annahita Beheshti, Landyn Lucas, Tanika Dunz, Maryna Haydash, Hope Chiodi, Breanna Edmiston, Chad Ford, Natalie Bohn, John Hunter Stein, Anthony Berrett, Brittney Sobota and Joseph Horzempa

DOI : 10.3844/amjsp.2015.9.13

Current Research in Medicine

Volume 6, Issue 1

Pages 9-13

Abstract

Naloxone is a common treatment option for the reversal of an opioid overdose. The law regulating naloxone varies from state to state and therefore so does the drug’s availability. The state of Rhode Island has legalized naloxone for over-the-counter use while a number of states allow prescriptions to opioid abusers and family members. The medical community as a whole appears to be divided on the issue of availability to lay persons. This is largely due to a lack of information on this relatively new subject, as well as discrepancies within the existing naloxone research in regard to the use of naloxone among the general public. This literature review provides an objective examination of the pros and cons of increasing the availability of naloxone to the public, with an emphasis on the state of West Virginia (WV). Due to WV’s high rates of opioid abuse and overdose, the implications of increasing public accessibility to naloxone could be invaluable in the effort to reduce opioid related deaths. To this end, a WV law that has recently gone into effect allows emergency personnel and family members of opioid addicts to carry naloxone. Ongoing research investigations will determine the impact of this law in regard to the overall wellbeing of the residents of WV and the implications on future laws regulating naloxone use.

Copyright

© 2015 Annahita Beheshti, Landyn Lucas, Tanika Dunz, Maryna Haydash, Hope Chiodi, Breanna Edmiston, Chad Ford, Natalie Bohn, John Hunter Stein, Anthony Berrett, Brittney Sobota and Joseph Horzempa. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.