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About the take home naloxone pilot

The take home naloxone pilot will invest $10 million to make naloxone available free to people who may experience, or witness, an opioid overdose.

What is naloxone?

Naloxone is a drug that can temporarily reverse the effects of an opioid overdose or adverse reaction. If someone has overdosed on opioids they will be unconscious or awake, but unable to talk. It’s unlikely they will be able to administer naloxone themselves. Naloxone can administered by injection or delivered through a nasal spray.

What is the take home naloxone pilot?

The Australian Government is investing $10 million in a Take Home Naloxone Pilot. Under the pilot, naloxone will be available free to people who may either experience, or witness, an opioid overdose. No prescription will be required.

Who is the take home naloxone pilot for?

The take home naloxone pilot is for:

  • people who are at risk of an opioid overdose or adverse reaction, their carers, friends and family members
  • approved providers such as community pharmacists, dispensing doctors and hospital pharmacists

Where will naloxone be available under the take home naloxone pilot?

Naloxone will be available in New South Wales, South Australia and Western Australia.

Each state will identify where naloxone will be available within their state. Sites may include:

  • community and hospital-based pharmacies
  • alcohol and drug treatment centres
  • needle and syringe programs

Find out where to access naloxone.

How long will the take home naloxone pilot run?

The take home naloxone pilot will start on 1 December 2019 and run through to 28 February 2021.

Why is the take home naloxone pilot important?

Opioid use is a major cause of hospitalisation and death in Australia:

  • Every day, 3 people die from drug-induced deaths involving opioid use in Australia, while nearly 150 hospitalisations and 14 emergency department admissions involve opioids.
  • More than 110,000 Australians are currently struggling with opioid dependence.
  • In 2018, 1,740 people died from drug-induced deaths, with opioids present in 1,123 of those deaths (64%).

Who is involved in the take home naloxone pilot?

The take home naloxone pilot is funded by the Australian Government. The Department of Health is overseeing the pilot and working with the state governments of New South Wales, South Australia and Western Australia to implement it.

Contact

Take home naloxone pilot contact

Contact the program for more information about the take home naloxone pilot.

s100programs [at] health.gov.au

View contact

Last updated: 
14 November 2019
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