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CVS Pharmacy / CVS Health / denying a customer narcan against state law, refusing to give me supervisor's name, hanging up on me

1 481 Lincoln Street, Worcester, MA, United States

Yesterday (1/19/2019) around 3 pm, my friend called me in a panic asking where she could get narcan as she had encountered two men who were displaying effects of opioid use (she had already spoken with first responders on scene and wanted some to carry on her person). I told her to go to the closest pharmacy to her at that moment, which was the CVS Pharmacy located at 481 Lincoln Street, Worcester, MA. She was rudely told by 2 pharmacy staff members that she needed a prescription. I had already relayed my knowledge of the standing order in MA that no person may be denied narcan from any pharmacy to her. She was then told by them to walk down the street to the methadone clinic. I called the pharmacy and spoke to the woman in charge at this time, she took my name and number and said she knew nothing about this law and would have to speak with her supervisor, so I then asked for their name and if I could speak with them and she told me that she would not be giving any names out and then hung up on me. Within minutes I was in my car on the way there, when she called me back and told me her coworkers told her about the law and that my friend could come back and get some. Meanwhile, my friend had gone to a neighboring pharmacy and was given it no problem, along with a description of how to use it effectively. This is a life saving measure and a necessity in the world we currently live in. These staff members could have cost people their lives, and who knows how many others they have denied narcan to.

I have started the process of reporting that location to the Department of Public Health, and have also now heard from others that this has been an issue at other CVS locations.

Jan 20, 2019

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