Overdose is a major and often overlooked cause of death among people who inject heroin or other opioids. 

Naloxone is an easy-to-use and highly effective lifesaving antidote to overdose from heroin or other opioids.

Drug users, their families, outreach workers and the police can be trained to use naloxone in the event of an overdose and save lives.

Why Naloxone?

Naloxone is an easy-to-use, lifesaving antidote to overdose from heroin or other opioids. Used in hospitals for decades, the medication has no abuse potential, costs as little as one dollar for a lifesaving dose and can be administered with basic training.

Select a region

In countries around the world, naloxone distribution programs have trained drug users, their families and friends to identify the signs of overdose, administer naloxone, and ultimately, save lives. These efforts have reversed tens of thousands of overdoses, and show that drug users and their communities can take positive steps to protect their health.

Get the Facts
  • Russia


    In Russia, one NGO attracted 900 new drug using clients when it started its naloxone distribution program.

  • Georgia


    The Georgian Harm Reduction Network is advocating to change the policy that requires police to be notified every time emergency services respond to an overdose.

  • Tajikistan


    In Tajikistan, nongovernmental organizations won an order from the Ministry of Health allowing them to store up to 500 vials of naloxone and distribute them to people at risk of overdose.

  • Kyrgyzstan


    In Kyrgyzstan, the Global Fund supports the purchase of $25,000 worth of naloxone a year, and the Ministry of Health allows for its distribution directly to drug users through nongovernmental organizations.

  • Kazakhstan


    In the first year of Kazakhstan’s overdose pilot, 137 naloxone kits were given to drug users, resulting in 31 reported reversals.

  • China


    Peer outreach workers carrying naloxone have performed more than 800 successful overdose reversals.

  • Vietnam


    In northern Vietnam, 43.5% of injecting drug users interviewed had survived an overdose. Drug user groups in Vietnam are working to address this, and have recorded scores of reversals with naloxone and rescue breathing in the past three years.

  • Thailand


    Thailand: Nongovernmental organizations in Thailand successfully negotiated with suppliers to decrease the price of a vial of naloxone from 240 to 77 Thai Baht.

  • India


    India: After an overdose response initiative began in the northeast Indian state of Manipur, those trained were able to respond to 95% of recorded overdose cases.

  • Australia


    In Australia, about 1 person dies from a heroin overdose each day. Naloxone pilot projects have recently begun, and hope to change this statistic.

  • Canada


    After a safer-injection facility opened in Vancouver, Canada, the fatal overdose rate in the surrounding area fell by 35%.

  • USA


    In the US, more than 53,000 people have been trained in overdose response, and more than 10,000 rescues with naloxone have been reported.

  • Colombia


    Colombia: In Colombia, where heroin use is now increasing, reports of overdose are common though naloxone is not yet available for peer distribution.

  • UK


    In 2011-12 in Scotland, 715 take-home naloxone kits were issued to prisoners at risk of opioid overdose upon their release from prison.

  • Tanzania


    Tanzania: In a survey of people who inject drugs in Tanzania, one third reported experiencing an overdose in the previous twelve months.