Pilot implementation of the PharmNet naloxone program in an independent pharmacy

Lori A. Eldridge, Beth E. Meyerson, Jon Agley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Background: The U.S. overdose epidemic has continued to escalate with more than 100,000 deaths per year in the past several years, most of which involve opioids. Widespread availability of naloxone is part of a national solution to the crisis, and community pharmacies are well-poised to facilitate such distribution and provide additional harm reduction services. Objectives: The primary objectives of this study were to (a) examine the usability of each of the separate intervention components prepared for PharmNet, (b) observe intervention fidelity through regularly scheduled site visits, and (c) explore the association between PharmNet implementation and the volume of naloxone sales and distribution in the pilot site. Practice description: Here, we describe a carefully designed and tailored pharmacy harm reduction intervention called PharmNet that is designed to maximize harm reduction impact while minimizing utilization of pharmacist resources. It is a pragmatic awareness, service provision, and referral program that was developed through careful, iterative feasibility studies with pharmacists. Practice innovation: PharmNet procedures include tools and steps to create awareness (e.g., yard signs and messaging for patients, reminder tools for pharmacists), facilitation of naloxone delivery from nonprofits, and provision of referral cards featuring local resources. Evaluation methods: Evaluation included direct data collection and randomly scheduled fidelity site visits. Results: The intervention was associated with an increase of 3.33 naloxone doses/mo being dispensed at cost (34.4% relative increase) and an overall increase of 9.33 naloxone doses/mo being dispensed via any mechanism (96.48% relative increase). Around 2.85 referral cards were issued to patients daily. Intervention fidelity was moderate, and the study provides valuable information for how to modify the study prior to a randomized trial. Conclusion: With modifications informed by this pilot study, the PharmNet intervention merits a randomized trial to determine whether it causes increased naloxone dispensing in independent community pharmacies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)374-382.e12
JournalJournal of the American Pharmacists Association
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2023

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology (nursing)
  • Pharmacy
  • Pharmacology


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