Washington lawmakers push for opioid overdose drug in public sch - KPTV - FOX 12

Washington lawmakers push for opioid overdose drug in public schools, dorms

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VANCOUVER, WA (KPTV) -

Schools in Washington could soon have a tool on hand to reverse the effects of an opioid overdose.

Lawmakers in Olympia are looking at legislation to add naloxone, also known as Narcan, to public high schools and college dorms.

Lawmakers said something has to be done to protect the young lives as the state deals with an opioid epidemic.

The legislation cites a CDC report that showed 694 people died from an opioid overdose in 2016 and 1,400 people overdosed.

"We need to do everything possible to save the lives of young people during this opioid epidemic," said Dist. 46 Rep. Gerry Pollet. "It reaches everywhere in our state and, sadly, every school and college. Naloxone is safe and easily administered. We need to educate people to recognize overdoses and enable school and college dorm staff to administer - especially since so few public schools have nurses on hand."

HB 2390 would require high schools to put in place a program to have naloxone on campus and have a member of the staff trained in how to use it. The same requirements go for publicly funded college dorms in the state.

The legislation also protects someone who is trained under the school and college policies from any liability for attempting to save a life.

Those who voted against the idea in Olympia said they applaud the intent behind the bill but did not feel those administering the drug would be trained at the proper level to be able to determine if naloxone should be used or not.

The Washington State House of Representatives passed the bill 79-19 Monday, it now heads to the State Senate for a vote.

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