(WJET/WFXP/YourErie.com) — A new bill on drug overdose treatment is being introduced by a couple of Pennsylvania lawmakers.
State Senators Dan Laughlin (R-49) and Anthony Williams (D-8) will introduce legislation aimed at helping individuals following a drug overdose in which a life-sustaining medication was used, according to a release.
The event to announce the bill introduction will be held on Wednesday, Oct. 18, at 9 a.m. in the state Capitol’s Main Rotunda. You can watch that event live online here.
The goal of this new legislation would be to create an involuntary commitment process for those given a life-sustaining drug (like Narcan) to counteract a drug overdose and who were transported to a hospital to be evaluated.
This process would be similar to the 302 commitment process, provided for by Pennsylvania’s Mental Health Procedures Act, which seeks an involuntary commitment for emergency evaluation and treatment for persons who are a danger to themselves or others due to a mental illness.
The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) states substance use disorder (SUD) is a “treatable mental disorder that affects a person’s brain and behavior, leading to their inability to control their use of substances like legal or illegal drugs, alcohol or medications.”
Substance use and mental disorders can make daily activities challenging by impairing a person’s ability to work, interact with family and fulfill other life functions. That’s why preventing these disorders and related problems is a critical part of a person’s behavioral and physical health.
Click here to find additional resources on substance use and mental disorders and prevention strategies.