Senator Eric P. Lesser joined Attorney General Maura Healey, Health and Human Services Secretary Mary Lou Sudders, Senate President Stan Rosenberg, Senator John Keenan, first responders, and families touched by addiction from across Massachusetts to announce the creation of a new trust fund for the bulk purchase of Narcan, a lifesaving anti-overdose medication.
The new trust fund is possible in part because of legislation filed by Senator Lesser in January, which was incorporated into the FY2016 budget this July. The legislature established this fund and set aside $100,000 for it, and this week, Amphastar Pharmaceuticals, the maker of Narcan, has agreed to pay $325,000 – enough for roughly 10,000 doses of this life-saving medicine.
“The heroin epidemic is wreaking havoc in our state, and we need every tool available to prevent further deaths,” Senator Lesser said. “The Narcan trust fund will allow more of our police, firefighters, EMTs and other first responders to administer this life-saving drug, saving lives in the process.”
“This agreement is about saving lives and about taking action to help families fight the heroin and opioid epidemic,” Attorney General Healey said. “This funding will help put Narcan into the hands of all first responders. We thank Senator Lesser for his continued advocacy and support for making Narcan more widely available to police and firefighters statewide.”
The Attorney General’s office worked with Amphastar to secure the $325,000 announced today. Now with close to half a million dollars, the trust fund will get to work making Narcan cheaper and more accessible for the first responders who use this drug every day.
The drug has shown consistently high overdose reversal success rates. For example, Quincy has seen a 95% success rate since the police department became the first in the country to equip every officer with Narcan in 2010.