State Senate passes 8 bills designed to address New York opioid crisis

New York State lawmakers recently passed legislation targeting the opioid epidemic, according to a WGRZ report.

Here are five things to know.

1. The legislation includes eight bills, which state senators approved on Monday.

2. Under Senate Bill 2639, a patient's primary care physician or prescribing medical professional would receive notification from hospital and emergency room physicians if the patient receives care for a drug overdose, according to the report.

"Because right now, you could get treated for an overdose and walk out of the emergency room, and your prescribing doctor might not be aware of that, while continuing to prescribe drugs for you," State Sen. Christopher Jacobs, R-60th District, said in the report.

3. Another bill, Senate Bill 3518, would make it a criminal offense to possess synthetic marijuana. It would also make selling the substance to a minor a felony, reports WGRZ.

4. Among other bills included in the legislative package are Senate Bill 300 and Senate Bill 816. Under the bills, veterinary drug Xylazine would be considered a controlled substance "due to recent instances of this...drug...being used to lace heroin," as would synthetic cathinone drug Alpha-PVP, or "Flakka," the report states.

5. Derivatives of the deadly synthetic opioid fentanyl are also targeted in the group of bills. Under Senate Bill 933, new fentanyl derivatives would be added to the controlled substance schedule and criminal penalties for the sale of an opiate containing a fentanyl derivative would be increased, according to the report.

For more information on bills included in the legislative package, read the full report here and the news release here.



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