Currently, Naloxone is generally available through local programs in two different formulations: an intramuscular injection and an intranasal spray, although the intramuscular injection is more commonly dispensed. A pharmaceutical company known as Insys Therapeutics, is looking to add a third formulation to that list, with the development of a Sublingual Spray form of Naloxone, which has received fast track designation from the FDA. For those unfamiliar with the term 'sublingual,' it means 'under the tongue'.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration provides what is called a 'Fast Track Designation', designed to "facilitate the development, and expedite the review of drugs to treat serious conditions and fill and unmet medical need." According to the FDA's website, the administration believes that "speeding the availability of drugs that treat serious diseases are in everyone's interest, especially when the drugs are the first available treatment or if the drug has advantages over existing treatments."
While more still needs to be done, adding a second needle-free Naloxone option for first responders, family and friends of those using opiates or at risk of overdose, and taking the steps to expanding access to the live-saving drug are positive steps in the right direction.