LIFESAVER

Virginia Approves Anti-Overdose Drug Without Prescription

Virginia state government will now allow anyone to purchase overdose-treatment drug naxolone without a prescription. While announcing the new rules on naxolone access on Monday, Virginia Health Commissioner Marissa Levine declared opioid addiction a public health emergency in the state. Naxolone can counteract the effects of opioid overdoses, which have seen an increase in Virginia and across the United States. Virginia currently averages three overdose deaths every day, with emergency room visits from heroin overdoses increasing 89 percent since last year. Some Virginia pharmacies already allow customers to purchase naxolone without a prescription. Levine said the new policies would expand access to the life-saving drug.