The drugstore chain Walgreens is taking a three-pronged approach to combat the public health crisis stemming from prescription opioids, according to a team of pharmacists and other clinicians from the company.
In the Journal of the American Pharmacists Association, they report that Walgreens pharmacies have expanded access to naloxone, a drug that can block the effects of opioid painkillers such as hydrocodone and oxycodone and thereby prevent overdose deaths from respiratory failure.
In addition, the chain installed medication-disposal kiosks in 500 of its 8,200 U.S. stores to make it easier for Americans to empty their medicine cabinets of unused pharmaceuticals that might otherwise fall into the hands of substance abusers.
Walgreens also has employed pharmacists and students to educate and counsel patients and caregivers about opioid overdoses and naloxone.
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