Development and delivery of a pharmacist training program to increase naloxone access in Kentucky

Medicines Management Collection
Journal Of The American Pharmacists Association : Japha
Publication date:
01 February 2017


OBJECTIVE: To describe the development and delivery of a comprehensive training program for Kentucky pharmacists to enable dispensation of naloxone per protocol. PRACTICE DESCRIPTION: In May 2015, the Kentucky Board of Pharmacy (KBP) promulgated regulations outlining the requirements for pharmacists to initiate the dispensing of naloxone under a physician-approved protocol. The Advancing Pharmacy Practice in Kentucky Coalition, a partnership between Kentucky's Colleges of Pharmacy, KBP, and state and local pharmacists associations, developed and offered educational programming to fulfill this regulation. Pharmacists who completed the 90-minute program could apply to KBP for registration as a naloxone-certified pharmacist. The program consists of a 90-minute session covering naloxone access, opioid overdoses, the pharmacology and use of naloxone, protocol development, patient identification, and resources. Sessions were offered live and via webinar. Sessions have also been incorporated into the pharmacy curriculum at the 2 colleges of pharmacy in Kentucky. RESULTS: Between June 28, 2015, and June 1, 2016, a total of 1254 pharmacists and 348 student pharmacists completed training. Of those, 646 (52%) have applied to KBP and received naloxone-certified status. The program was well received, with 87% of learners ranking the usefulness of the information presented as excellent. Learners cited screening tips, protocol information, patient screening information, and education resources as information they will implement in their practice. CONCLUSION: The swift deployment of training to a wide variety of pharmacy professionals has resulted in a substantial number of naloxone-certified pharmacists across Kentucky. Through a coordinated training initiative involving all major pharmacy stakeholders, we reached many individuals rapidly, documenting the value of this approach for future training endeavors. This educational initiative may enhance pharmacy practice across Kentucky and the nation by expanding and educating on the role pharmacists can play in public health and overdose death prevention.