An annual report which provides data on the number of take-home naloxone kits supplied by Scotland’s National Naloxone Programme in 2016/17, has been published.
The overall aim of the National Naloxone Programme is to contribute to a reduction in fatal opioid overdoses in Scotland. Naloxone is a medication that temporarily reverses the effects of opioid overdose, available to anyone at risk of opioid overdose.
The monitoring report, published by the Information Services Division, presents data separately for kits supplied in the community, kits supplied in prisons at the point of prisoner release and (for the first time) kits dispensed via community prescription.
Previous years’ publications have included data on the number and percentage of opioid-related deaths that occurred within four weeks of prison release or within four weeks of hospital discharge. This information was not available for inclusion within this report but will be included in a revised report in early 2018.
Key points of the report:
- A total of 8,159 take-home naloxone kits were issued in Scotland in 2016/17, a decrease of 1% on the previous year. A total of 37,609 take-home naloxone kits were supplied in Scotland between 2011/12 and 2016/17.
- In 2016/17, 6,497 kits were issued in the community, 700 kits were issued in prisons upon release and 962 kits were dispensed via community prescription.
- In 2016/17, 3,471 (48%) take-home naloxone kits distributed in the community and prisons were repeat supplies. Of these, 882 (25%) repeat supplies were made because the previous kit was reported as having been used to treat an opioid overdose.
- In 2016/17, it is estimated that 3,386 kits were issued as a first supply to an individual at risk of opioid overdose. Cumulatively, 21,189 ‘at risk’ individuals are estimated to have been supplied with take-home naloxone between 2011/12 and 2016/17.
- At the end of 2016/17, the ‘reach’ of take-home naloxone (based on the number of ‘at risk’ individuals supplied with kits between 2011/12 and 2016/17) was estimated to be 345 kits per 1,000 problem drug users.