Maybe you’ve seen our “Ask Me About Naloxone” shirts and buttons! The Safe Out LGBTQ Youth Coalition focuses on substance use prevention, but we also understand that harm reduction is just as important.  We’ve worked with the organization Sonoran Prevention Works to learn and deliver training on harm reduction methods. This includes learning about medication called naloxone or Narcan, which can be used to treat an opioid overdose in an emergency situation. 

what is naloxone (Narcan?)

Naloxone / Narcan is a non-addictive emergency medication called an “opioid antagonist.” This life saving medication can be administered in an emergency situation to reverse an opioid related overdose. If there are no opioids in a person’s system, naloxone will not have any effect. If opioids are present, there are no side effects except for withdrawal related symptoms. 

If someone is experiencing an overdose, is unconscious or not breathing, and you have to administer naloxone,

CALL 911



Here are a few common questions about Naloxone.

who should use it & when
  • Any layperson can administer naloxone to someone who is experiencing an opioid overdose. We recommend attending an Overdose and Harm Reduction Training through Sonoran Prevention Works or Safe Out to learn more first, but you do not have to be trained on how to give someone naloxone through IM injection or the nasal spray.

are there different forms?
  • There are currently four different types of naloxone that can be administered through  intramuscular (IM) injection or nasal spray. Each vial or nasal spray contains one dose of naloxone. More than one may need to be administered to reverse an overdose. 

How to obtain naloxone in AZ
  • There are a few ways you can get naloxone. You can talk with your doctor and ask for a prescription or purchase it directly from the pharmacy without a prescription. Many insurance plans, including AHCCCS, cover naloxone. You can also reach out to organizations like Sonoran Prevention Works, Shot in the Dark, and Safe Out to learn how to obtain it from community organizations.
the right to dispense, carry & administer in AZ
  • Sonoran Prevention Works and other organizations were instrumental in increasing greater community access to naloxone. 

    Under A.R.S. § 36-2267, “A person who in good faith and without compensation administers an opioid antagonist to a person who is experiencing an opioid-related overdose is not liable for any civil or other damages as the result of any act or omission by the person rendering the care or as the result of any act or failure to act to arrange for further medical treatment or care for the person experiencing the overdose, unless the person while rendering the care acts with gross negligence, willful misconduct or intentional wrongdoing.”

    In other words, if you carry naloxone and administer it to someone with the intention of helping them in the event of an emergency, you are protected under the law.

    Are you a provider or prescriber? For the A.R.S. related to prescribing and dispensing, read more here.