(Concord, NH) As part of its commitment to fighting the opioid epidemic, Harvard Pilgrim Health Care is offering voluntary opioid education and NARCAN® Nasal Spray training to employer groups who want to host sessions at their workplace. Harvard Pilgrim is the first health insurer in New England to conduct opioid epidemic education and NARCAN® training for its employer groups.

The first training in New Hampshire will be held on October 12, at 2:30pm for employees at Riverbend Community Mental Health Inc., a provider of psychiatric services located at 10 West Street in Concord.  The training session will provide Riverbend employees with the tools needed to potentially save a client or loved one’s life in the event of a life-threatening overdose.

“We believe that NARCAN® should be as readily available as fire extinguishers or defibrillators in the workplace,” said Bill Brewster, MD, Harvard Pilgrim Regional Vice President for New Hampshire, “Those with addiction, as well as their family and friends, need to have easy access to NARCAN®.  We must take the stigma out of needing help and deal with this crisis with openness and education.”

Adapt Pharma, Inc., the makers of NARCAN®, worked with Harvard Pilgrim to develop the curriculum for the training sessions and donated the educational materials that will be used.  

Harvard Pilgrim has a second training scheduled for Hill Holiday, a marketing & advertising agency, at their Boston office in early November.

Harvard Pilgrim is committed to driving solutions to help stop the growing opioid epidemic. Three years ago, the company was the first health plan in the region not to charge co-pays for NARCAN®. This action was taken to eliminate any financial barriers to obtaining the drug.  Last year, Harvard Pilgrim began offering NARCAN® training to all its employees.

Harvard Pilgrim also covers all forms of medication-assisted treatment for substance abuse disorder without the need for prior authorization and supports a range of evidence-based treatments for pain, such as acupuncture. The insurer is also broadening access to non-opioid approaches such as mindfulness and therapeutic yoga for those dealing with pain and/or addiction and is working with providers in these disciplines who have experience in pain management.

In May, Harvard Pilgrim announced the launch of a $40,000 Opioid Misuse Prevention, Recovery and Treatment Grants program. Funded by the Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation, the program provides individual grants up to $10,000 to local nonprofit organizations in New Hampshire that serve residents dealing with opioid addiction. The company recently partnered with the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation and donated $50,000 to their New Hampshire Tomorrow Fund, to assist local families affected by the opioid epidemic.


About Harvard Pilgrim Health Care

Harvard Pilgrim and its family of companies provide health benefit plans, programs and services to more than 3 million customers in New England and beyond. A leading not-for-profit health services company, we guide our members –  and the communities we serve – to better health.  Founded by doctors nearly 50 years ago, we’re building on our legacy. In partnership with our expansive network of doctors and hospitals, we’re improving health outcomes and lowering costs through clinical quality and innovative care management.  Our commitment to the communities we serve is driven by the passion of the Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation. Through its work, low- and moderate-income families are gaining greater access to fresh, affordable food — a cornerstone to better health and well-being.


To learn more about Harvard Pilgrim, visit harvardpilgrim.org.


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