SPRINGFIELD — Wellfleet Insurance will offer student health-plan members access to Narcan and naloxone at no cost in 2021, as part of its industry-exclusive student drug formulary.
Wellfleet, a Berkshire Hathaway insurance carrier, is allowing current student health-plan members one dose per year of either Narcan nasal spray or a generic naloxone injectable from in-network pharmacy providers at no out-of-pocket cost.
Opioid and drug-related overdoses have surged amid the pandemic, with more than 40 states reporting increases in opioid-related mortality, according to the American Medical Assoc. By age group, the CDC says young adults aged 18 to 25 are most prone to abusing prescription drugs.
“We’re seeing the opioid crisis reaching college campuses across the country,” said Jennifer Stevens, director of Pharmacy at Wellfleet. “While Wellfleet has worked with pharmacy providers to ensure the safe, appropriate use of opioid prescriptions, we realized we needed to provide easy access to this life-saving medication.”
While first responders carry Narcan, it’s often friends, family, or bystanders who discover an individual experiencing an opioid overdose — and response time is crucial. Administering Narcan is a simple process that requires little training, but its typical cost of $50 or more per dose can be a barrier.
“Adding Narcan at $0 co-pay empowers students to easily equip themselves with medicine that can save lives, on and off campus,” Stevens said.