HomeCity NewsProvidence to Launch Lifesaving Narcan Kiosk

Providence to Launch Lifesaving Narcan Kiosk

Providence Saint Joseph Medical Center in Burbank will open an outdoor kiosk that dispenses free Narcan, an antidote to fentanyl overdose, on Tuesday, May 7, at 9 a.m.

Early last year, Providence Saint Joseph Medical Center began providing free Narcan to anyone who asks, no prescription, no identification, no age limit. Now, the hospital is removing another barrier to distribution of the highly effective opioid overdose reversal medication — opening an outdoor kiosk to help maintain anonymity and save even more lives.

Hospital officials said the new kiosk will save lives by eliminating the financial and supply chain barriers to obtaining Narcan, which costs about $30 a dose.

“Narcan is a nasal spray that is safe and very effective,” said Providence spokesperson Patricia Aidem. “It acts by quickly removing opioids from their receptors in the brain that control breathing. Providence believes anonymous, unfettered access to free Narcan can cut those numbers.”

According to the Drug Enforcement Administration, there was enough fentanyl seized in California in 2023 to potentially kill the world’s population, nearly twice over. In 2022, it became the deadliest street drug in L.A. County.

The overdose death rate is highest among men in their mid-20s to late 30s, with the black population suffering the highest death rate per capita — nearly 50 deaths per 100,000 people.

“The easier it is for people to obtain Narcan, the fewer patients will end up in emergency rooms — or worse,” Aidem said.

First published in the May 4 print issue of the Burbank Leader.

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