Chipman bill requires pharmacy board to approve naloxone immediately

Posted: January 30, 2018 | Senator Chipman

AUGUSTA — A bill introduced by Sen. Ben Chipman, D-Portland, will have a work session in the Legislature’s Health and Human Services Committee on Wednesday at 2:30 P.M. LD 565, “An Act To Address Maine’s Opiate Addiction Crisis” would require the Board of Pharmacy to approve and release the rules regarding the life-saving drug, Naloxone, immediately.

“The Board of Pharmacy is stalling and waiting for something they absolutely do not need. The attorney general has already said they don’t need his signature to release this life-saving drug. In the meantime, people are dying,” said Sen. Chipman. “The opioid epidemic is a non-partisan issue. It our responsibility as lawmakers to take action.”

This Legislature has worked to increase access to Naloxone, however, the governor has repeatedly hindered the process. Sen. Chipman hopes that this bill can finally make this life-saving drug available to those who need it most.

Naloxone is an anti-overdose drug that can reverse or reduce the harmful effects of an overdose. Increasing access to this life-saving drug is just one component of combating the opioid crisis in the state. Lawmakers on the Legislative Task Force to Address the Opioid Crisis in the State have worked hard to develop a comprehensive set of recommendations to address the crisis that include prevention, treatment and law enforcement.

Sen. Chipman is the lead Senate Democrat on the Health and Human Service Committee.