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BC's Take Home Naloxone Program

On OD Awareness Day - August 31, 2012 - we launched the BC Take Home Naloxone (THN) Program webpage. The new naloxone section on our website includes: frequently asked questions (FAQs), program implementation guidelines, training manual and resources (including videos), program administration information forms, and much more.

How to Take Part in the BC Pilot Program

Like other THN programs in the world, we aim to provide people who use opioids the opportunity to prevent an overdose and reduce harm in emergency situations. The program empowers people by training them about how to prevent an overdose, identify symptoms of an overdose, and respond to an overdose including the administration of naloxone. Distributing the kits requires the collaboration of: an educator to conduct the training session, a physician or nurse practitioner to prescribe naloxone, a person to dispense the kits, and a coordinator  to follow up with the BCCDC Harm Reduction Program team. However, an individual health care professional may take on more than one of these roles.

If your community or healthcare service would like to take part, please spend some time reviewing the “Understanding THN” and “Participant Training” resources on, such as the Program Guide, Participant Training Manual, and the Webinar for Service Providers (featured at top of the page).

Findings from the BC THN Program

The BC THN program is a pilot study and thus far has given out 350 kits across the province to three organizations in Vancouver Coastal Health, and three organizations in Interior Health. 100 of these kits are in the hands of people who use opioids. To date, the BC THN program has had eight overdose reversals! Northern Health Authority has also started to plan their THN programs and discussions are taking place in Vancouver Island Health Authority and Fraser Health Authority.  

Contact the BC Harm Reduction Program to discuss becoming a THN site and getting approval from your health authority OR finding a THN site near you! E-mail

Naloxone Administration is Childs Play

Have you ever seen a friend or family member respond to an opioid overdose? Want to get an idea of how naloxone can save a life in just a few minutes? Injecting Advice has released this video called: Naloxone administration is childs play. Watch to learn more.

BC, considered a leader in harm reduction, has ensured the BC THN pilot program has met all health and safety requirements under current legislation. Naloxone must be prescribed to a specific individual by a physician. Individuals who don’t use opioids but know someone who does (such as support workers, peers, and family members) are not eligible to receive a kit. However they are encouraged to attend the training to learn how to respond in an emergency. Kits are currently provided by the BC Harm Reduction Program and are not covered by Pharmacare.

The Journal of American Medical Association has some insights on where we should go next.

We would like to thank everyone for their contributions and support in creating this program and for the THN sites that are taking part in the pilot.

A big part of the THN program was to develop a Naloxone Decision Support Tool for Nurses alongside nurse leaders in BC. Find all the resources at: