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Lawmakers Look To Drug 'Antagonist' To Halt Overdoses

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TALLAHASSEE (CBSMiami/NSF) - House and Senate committees this week backed proposals aimed at helping stop potential drug overdoses.

The proposals (HB 751 and SB 758) would allow prescriptions to be written for a type of drug known as an "opioid antagonist."

Opioid antagonists can be injected to halt potentially fatal overdoses of drugs such as heroin and oxycodone.

Under the bills, prescriptions could be written to patients or caregivers, who could administer the opioid antagonists during emergency situations.

The House Health Quality Subcommittee this week unanimously approved the House version of the bill, which is co-sponsored by Rep. Julio Gonzalez, R-Venice, and Rep. Ronald "Doc" Renuart, R-Ponte Vedra Beach. Both of the House sponsors are physicians.

Gonzalez called the proposal a "life saving measure." Meanwhile, the Senate Health Policy Committee unanimously approved the similar SB 758, sponsored by Sen. Greg Evers, R-Baker.

The News Service of Florida contributed to this report.

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