Calif. Bill Aims To Increase Access to Drug To Treat Opiate Overdoses
A bill (AB 1535) that would increase the availability of naloxone -- a drug that commonly is used to reverse respiratory depression caused by overdosing on painkillers, such as morphine and oxycodone -- is awaiting approval by Gov. Jerry Brown (D), KPBS reports.
Naloxone, which is available as a nasal spray or injectable medication, has been used for decades by emergency department physicians and paramedics.
Laura Thomas, deputy state director of the Drug Policy Alliance, said the medication works to counteract any opiate substance and has no effect when given to individuals who have not taken opiates (Goldberg, KPBS, 9/1).
The bill, by Assembly member Richard Bloom (D-Santa Monica), would make the drug available without a prescription at pharmacies across the state (California Healthline, 4/14).
If the measure is approved by Brown, California would be the fifth state to make naloxone available over-the-counter, according to KPBS (KPBS, 9/1).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.