- New Jersey says doctors must prescribe Narcan alongside opioids for at-risk patients


Narcan nasal delivery system, developed by Adapt Pharma, is a push-button device created to save the life of someone overdosing on opioids.

For the duration of the coronavirus crisis, doctors, dentists and other healthcare workers who prescribe opioids to patients with chronic pain may now have to prescribe an overdose-reversal drug alongside it.

Announced Thursday by New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal, the rule demands healthcare practitioners prescribe naloxone, commonly known by its brand name Narcan, to those regularly taking higher doses of opioids or combining opioids with benzodiazepines, which include anti-anxiety medications like Xanax. 

Similar rules had already been proposed by the various state boards governing medical professionals, according to the order. But the pandemic, along with a rising number of overdose deaths, led state officials to leapfrog the time-consuming approval process.

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