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Blumenthal urges pharmaceutical company to lower over-the-counter Narcan prices

Narcan nasal spray.
Molly Ingram
/
WSHU
Narcan nasal spray.

U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal has sent a letter to Emergent BioSolutions, the company that produces Narcan, urging them to keep prices for the drug low.

The FDA authorized over-the-counter sale of the drug last week.

Narcan is sold in packs of two and currently costs around $50.

Blumenthal said Narcan is a “life-saving drug,” but it can only curb fatal overdoses if it is affordable.

“Harm reduction depends on price reduction,” Blumenthal said. “Harm reduction cannot be achieved if prices are rising. And we know that Fentanyl continues to kill.”

U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) and Connecticut Harm Reduction Alliance Founder and Executive Director Mark Jenkins
Molly Ingram
/
WSHU
U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) and Connecticut Harm Reduction Alliance Founder and Executive Director Mark Jenkins

Connecticut Harm Reduction Alliance founder and executive director Mark Jenkins said the FDA must encourage market competition to lower prices.

“Competition always helps price and we saw it already,” Jenkins said. “When other versions, generic versions, came to the market, it considerably lowered the price overnight.”

According to the CDC, there were more than 100,000 fatal overdoses in the country last year. Around 80,000 of them involved opioids.

Narcan, when used quickly and correctly, can reverse the effects of an opioid overdose in time to seek medical attention.

Molly is a reporter covering Connecticut. She also produces Long Story Short, a podcast exploring public policy issues across Connecticut.