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Senate committee passes bill to expand use of heroin overdose drug to public

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Posted on http://www.wthr.com on Feb 04, 2015, by Kris Kirschner, WTHR reporter

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INDIANAPOLIS – A Senate health committee unanimously approved a bill Wednesday that could expand the use of a life-saving tool.

The bill would make Narcan — the antidote for a heroin overdose —
available to the public.

Supporters of the bill testified Wednesday that Narcan would not only be a
prescription drug to help addicts, but also the elderly who take prescription medications,
as well as children.

One woman, Justin Phillips, has a very personal stake in this legislation, also known as Aaron’s Law. It is named after her own son who died of a heroin overdose.

READ JUSTIN PHILLIPS’ STORY.

Brian Sims, Aaron’s brother, testified in favor of the bill, saying, “we all have our own issues, addictions, it will provide them with second chance and family peace of mind they can save their loved ones from an addiction that can kill them.”

We’ve seen police agencies who’ve made it a priority to have supplies of Narcan in cases of drug overdoses, which have nearly doubled in the past year in Central Indiana.

Aaron’s Law would put that antidote in the hands of anyone in the hopes of saving lives.

We spoke with the bill’s sponsor last month about its significance.

“It would allow a citizen to go to a physician’s office and get a prescription for a family member or family friend to administer Narcan to one of their family members or neighbors if they overdose on heroin,” said State Sen. Jim Merritt.

He says there would be no liability for that person administering the drug to someone in need.

READ MORE STORIES ABOUT NARCAN.


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