BOSTON (WWLP) – State lawmakers are trying to prevent drug overdose deaths in Massachusetts with a bill that would protect first responders, as well as drug addicts.
Narcan is becoming more readily available. At least twenty state lawmakers want to protect those who administer the life-saving drug. Most first responders, fire departments and police stations have the overdose reversal drug, Narcan, on hand.
The state legislature’s Public Health Committee is considering a bill that would require emergency personnel to transport addicts to the hospital if they’re suffering from an overdose.
The patient would be held for a three to four hour “cooling down” period so a physician can make sure there aren’t complications from an overdose.
The bill would protect first responders, fire fighters and police officers from legal liability if a patient suffers adverse side effects from Narcan.
Dan Muse from the Municipal Police Training Center told 22News “The shelf life of Narcan is a lot shorter than the narcotic, so it’s going to wear out of your system. If you have enough narcotic, theoretically you could still overdose again because it’s still in your system.”
Two western Massachusetts lawmakers have co-sponsored the bill that is currently in committee.