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Carry naloxone. Help save a life.

Anyone—including you—can give naloxone to someone who is experiencing an overdose.

Naloxone (also known as the brand names Kloxxado™, Narcan®, RiVive™, or Zimhi®) is a medicine that can save someone’s life if they overdose on opioids—whether it’s a prescription opioid, heroin, or an illicit drug containing fentanyl. Naloxone quickly blocks and reverses the effects of an opioid overdose. You can tell it is working because it quickly helps a person breathe normally. It is not a treatment for opioid use disorder (OUD) or opioid misuse.

Naloxone nasal spray is a ready-to-use medicine that can be given without any special training. The spray bottle is small and can fit in your pocket, purse, or glove compartment.

Carrying naloxone does not mean that you are encouraging people to misuse opioids or other drugs. It just means that you are ready to save a life in an emergency.

Quick facts about naloxone

Naloxone is available over the counter.

Where can I get naloxone?

Naloxone is available over-the-counter in many pharmacies. There are also some naloxone products that need a prescription. Your local pharmacy staff can help you get naloxone and suggest ways to help save on the cost. Your local health department may be able to provide naloxone at no cost to you.

Use the map from Stop Overdoses to find locations in Kentucky. 

Can’t find anything near you? You might be able to order it online to be mailed to you through NEXT Distro.

Save on the cost of naloxone

The Kentucky Naloxone Copay Program may reduce the cost of naloxone by up to $45 when used at the pharmacy counter. Show the card to pharmacy staff to determine your eligibility and get more information.

Image of the naloxone copay program card with text that reads "Pay as little as $0 for most naloxone products, including Narcan, Kloxxado, Zimhi, generics"

Beyond the pharmacy: Other ways to get naloxone

Find naloxone free of charge

Launched in March 2024, FindNaloxoneNowKY aims to help Kentuckians access naloxone.

Search for naloxone distribution locations based on city or zip code, with the ability to filter to show places where naloxone is available free of charge. Additionally, the website provides information about local health departments offering naloxone, pharmacy access, and guides on how to use naloxone effectively. For more, visit FindNaloxoneNowKY

NaloxBox near me?

A NaloxBox is a tool designed to house doses of naloxone. Similar to automated external defibrillators (AEDs), NaloxBoxes allow bystanders to help save lives by providing accessible naloxone (at no cost) in emergency situations. is constructing a map where you can locate the nearest community-access NaloxBox.

NaloxBoxes installed through HCS-KY efforts (only applicable to the 16 counties that participated in HCS) are mapped here. Once you are on the page, select "NaloxBox Locations" (near the bottom) from the drop-down list under "Select Measure". 

How to use naloxone

In only 9 minutes, learn about naloxone, opioids, signs of an opioid overdose, and steps to take if you believe someone has overdosed using this video prepared by the HCS-KY team. This training is available in English, Spanish, Swahili, and Arabic.

Watch Now

Good Samaritan laws

Kentucky, like most states, has enacted laws to protect people who prescribe, carry, and use naloxone from civil and criminal liability. For more information, please visit the Kentucky Harm Reduction Coalition website.

Read More

Image of a Paris-Bourbon County EMS employee with a quote from them that reads "Everyone can carry naloxone and save a life."

No-cost naloxone for eligible agencies

The Kentucky Opioid Response Effort (KORE) distributes free naloxone through a statewide Overdose Education and Naloxone Distribution Program. In partnership with the Kentucky Pharmacists Association and the Department of Health, KORE provides free naloxone to eligible agencies; requests are submitted through an online portal.

Click below to access the appropriate submission form for your agency:

Law Enforcement Agencies

  • Please note there are two links to follow for submission based on your county

First Responder/Emergency Services

KORE-funded agencies, HEALing Communities Study Wave 1 and Wave 2 partner agencies, and others


For more information about KORE, managed by the Kentucky Department of Behavioral Health, Developmental and Intellectual Disabilities:

Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services logo

Learn More

You may be wondering...

How safe is naloxone?

Naloxone is very safe and saves lives. It can be given to anyone showing signs of an opioid overdose, even if you are not sure if they have used opioids. Naloxone is not addictive and cannot be used to get high.

A Quick Start guide in the box gives instructions for each product and should be read in advance.

Naloxone has been proven to be extremely safe, with no negative effects on the body if the person has not used opioids. It can also be used on pregnant women and children in overdose situations.

People with physical dependence on opioids may have signs of withdrawal within minutes after they are given naloxone, but this is normal because it means that the naloxone is helping the person to breathe again. Normal withdrawal symptoms can include headaches, changes in blood pressure, anxiety, rapid heart rate, sweating, nausea, vomiting, and tremors. These symptoms are usually not life-threatening but can be uncomfortable. Always call 911 in an overdose emergency.

How long before I know naloxone is working?

Naloxone products for emergency bystander use begin working within minutes after they are given and should help the person wake up and breathe again. After administering a dose of naloxone (spray, injection, etc.), continue rescue breathing. If the person begins breathing or you need to leave them to get assistance, put the person in the recovery position:

Image of person in recovery position

Further instructions can be found in the box with the product, or online by searching for "recovery position."​

  • If the person does not respond to the first dose of naloxone within two to three minutes, a second dose should be given, after putting the person on their back again. Additional doses can be given every 2 to 3 minutes if the person does not begin breathing.

  • Stop giving naloxone when the person is breathing normally, even if they are not yet awake.

  • Important: If using a nasal spray, a second dose requires a second spray bottle (atomizer).

  • Naloxone works for 30 to 90 minutes, but because many opioids remain in the body longer than that, it is possible for a person to show signs of an overdose after naloxone wears off. Therefore, one of the most important steps is to call 911 so the person can receive medical attention to monitor their breathing and treat these possible effects. Wait for emergency personnel to arrive and be sure to tell them about the products and doses you gave the patient. Be sure to throw away all used spray bottles and naloxone products in the appropriate container.

Who can use naloxone?

Anyone can give naloxone to someone who is overdosing from a prescription opioid medicine, heroin, or a drug containing fentanyl. Naloxone nasal sprays (Kloxxado™, RiVive™, Narcan®, or generics) require no assembly and are sprayed into one nostril while the person lies on their back. No priming is needed. Each box comes with two spray bottles in case a second dose is needed. An injectable naloxone product (Zimhi®) is also available with a prescription.

Carrying naloxone does not mean that you are encouraging people to misuse opioids or other drugs. It just means that you are ready to save a life if they overdose.

For more information on laws that protect people who prescribe, carry, and use naloxone, please visit the Kentucky Harm Reduction Coalition website.

Why should I carry naloxone?

If you or a loved one struggle with opioid use, you should have naloxone nearby. Ask your family and friends to carry it and let them know where your naloxone is, in case they need to use it.

People who previously used opioids and have stopped are at higher risk for an overdose if they return to use. This includes people who have completed a detox program or have recently been released from jail, a residential treatment center, or the hospital. These people now have a lower tolerance for opioids and can overdose more easily.