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House of Representatives
Session of 2021 - 2022 Regular Session


Posted: January 7, 2021 10:52 AM
From: Representative Brandon J. Markosek
To: All House members
Subject: Expanding Good Samaritan Protections for Naloxone Distribution (Former HB 1377)
Since 1999, the opioid crisis has taken the lives of over 450,000 Americans. In 2018, 4,415 Pennsylvanians lost their lives to drug-related overdose deaths, with the majority of these deaths involving opioids. By December of 2017, law enforcement in Pennsylvania successfully reversed more than 6,400 overdoses by administering naloxone, a medication designed to reverse opioid overdoses. This medication can be safely administered by both medical professionals and bystanders who witness an overdose to prevent death and injury.

Increasing the availability of naloxone has been clearly shown to reduce rates of opioid-related injuries and deaths without increasing non-medical opioid usage. The number of people who could be rescued from opioids only stands to increase if more individuals were able to utilize naloxone without fear of civil damages.

I am introducing legislation to provide further immunity to an individual or organization who, in good faith, acquires and administers naloxone. This legislation, modeled after protections that cover those who administer Automated External Defibrillators (AED), would be a simple mechanism to apply another lifesaving measure, encouraging individuals who are with someone experiencing a potential overdose to help prevent serious injury or death.

There are documented cases where lifesaving actions were not taken due to fear of arrest. Please join me in helping the fearful bystander become an empowered citizen who can be a part of the increasing number of successful overdose reversals. 

Introduced as HB575