Big Y Looks to Combat Opioid-related Deaths

SPRINGFIELD — Big Y Pharmacy and Wellness Centers can now prescribe and fill naloxone for customers in all 39 of its pharmacy locations in Massachusetts and Connecticut. This effort is intended to help prevent opioid-related deaths throughout the region.

Naloxone is used to reverse the effects of an opioid overdose. All Big Y pharmacists are trained to assist patients and their family members on how to recognize signs of an opioid overdose and how to administer this medication.

According to state government data, in 2016 opioid-related deaths claimed nearly 2,000 lives in Massachusetts and 1,000 in Connecticut. Naloxone can be administered to any person who has overdosed on a variety of opioids, including oxycodone, hydrocodone, morphine, codeine, and even heroin.

“Many of our pharmacists have contributed their professional expertise during panels at local opioid-epidemic forums in our communities. The ability to now prescribe and fill naloxone for our patients and their families is just another way we can help them prevent an accidental overdose, save lives, and allow our patients the opportunity to seek long-term treatment,” said Nicole D’Amour Schneider, director of Pharmacy.

Big Y operates 77 locations throughout Massachusetts and Connecticut, including 70 supermarkets, 39 pharmacies, Fresh Acres Market, Table & Vine Fine Wines and Liquors, and five Big Y Express gas and convenience locations, with more than 11,000 employees in all.

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