Connecticut Seal

Substitute Senate Bill No. 1144

Public Act No. 03-159

AN ACT CONCERNING THE TREATMENT OF DRUG OVERDOSES.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

Section 1. (Effective July 1, 2003) The Commissioner of Public Health shall publish a report on state-wide drug overdose trends that reviews state death rates from available data to ascertain changes in the causes or rates of fatal and nonfatal drug overdoses for the preceding period of not less than three years. The report shall include: (1) Trends in drug overdose death rates; and (2) suggested improvements in data collection. The commissioner shall report, in accordance with section 11-4a of the general statutes, on or before January 1, 2004, to the Governor and the joint standing committee of the General Assembly having cognizance of matters relating to public health.

Sec. 2. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2003) A licensed health care professional who is permitted by law to prescribe an opioid antagonist may, if acting with reasonable care, prescribe, dispense or administer an opioid antagonist to a drug user in need of such intervention without being liable for damages to such person in a civil action or subject to criminal prosecution. For purposes of this section, "opioid antagonist" means naloxone hydrochloride or any other similarly acting and equally safe drug approved by the federal Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of drug overdose.

Approved June 26, 2003