Those who overdose on heroin or other opioid drugs in Kentucky’s largest population areas would be immediately detained by first responders and taken to a hospital under a bill that has passed the House.
For Immediate Release
March 20, 2018
Opioid overdose bill goes to Senate
FRANKFORT—Those who overdose on heroin or other opioid drugs in Kentucky’s largest population areas would be immediately detained by first responders and taken to a hospital under a bill that has passed the House.
House Bill 428, sponsored by Rep. Kimberly Poore Moser, R-Taylor Mill, would specifically apply to overdose victims in Lexington, Louisville, or areas like Northern Kentucky where adjoining counties each have populations over 90,000.
Moser, who is the director of the Northern Kentucky Office of Drug Control Policy, said the need for the bill was brought to her attention by first responders who she said are often called to resuscitate the same person for opioid overdose multiple times. Moser said there were over 15,100 emergency medical runs requiring resuscitation due to opioid overdoses in Kentucky last year, not counting more than 2,000 runs in Jefferson County alone.
First responders “brought this issue to me because they are unable to get the folks into treatment when they are resuscitated,” said Moser. “These folks wake up and they are able to just get up and walk away and refuse treatment” even though she said they may still be under the influence of drugs.
“They need to get to a hospital for stabilization, referral to treatment and further treatment and this is what this bill seeks to do,” said Moser.
Failure to receive appropriate treatment for opioid overdose often leads to death, with 1,404 deaths from opioid overdose reported in Kentucky in 2016 alone, said Moser.
“Death is a distinct possibility with opioid overdoses,” she said.
HB 428 passed the House on a 92-3 vote. It now goes to the Senate for its consideration.
For Immediate Release
March 21, 2018
Standards-for-treatment disorders bill goes to governor
FRANKFORT— A bill that would attack Kentucky’s opioid crisis through better state substance use disorder treatment and recovery program standards has received final passage in the Kentucky House.
House Bill 124, sponsored by House Health and Family Services Committee Chair Rep. Addia Wuchner, R-Florence, and Rep. Kimberly Poore Moser, R-Taylor Mill, would require enhanced licensure and quality standards for substance use disorder treatment and recovery after a state review of current statewide standards, subject to available funding. Enhanced standards would cover residential, outpatient and medication-assisted treatment (MAT) services, according to the bill.
Wuchner said she has traveled the state visiting treatment and recovery centers and found that some programs have “a lot of dynamics and a lot of differences.”
“That doesn’t mean that every program has to be the same, but there should be components of that program that are consistent with best practices,” said Wuchner.
HB 124 was amended in the Senate on a 36-0 vote late last week to include FDA-approved MAT treatment for inmates who are opioid-dependent or who have other substance abuse disorders.
“As some of those products that are used for medically-assisted treatment come to market and come to bear, there are more products now that could be used in the corrections environment that minimize diversion, and that’s why this piece was added,” said Wuchner.
HB 124 received final passage in the House today on a vote of 93-0. The bill was initially passed in the House on an 85-2 vote in January.