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Maine’s Governor Prepares To Restrict Access To Lifesaving Drug That Can Prevent Heroin Overdoses

(ThinkProgress) This week, the Obama administration called on states to ease access to naloxone, a lifesaving prescription drug that can reverse the effects of an opioid overdose. Federal drug officials noted that the number of deaths resulting from prescription drugs and heroin is a huge public health crisis, and requires a serious response. But not every public official is ready to heed that call.
Maine Gov. Paul LePage (R), who has consistently opposed efforts to broaden the use of naloxone, appears to be ready to shoot down yet another piece of legislation on the subject.
On Wednesday, the state legislature is holding a hearing on a bill that would allow police officers, first responders, and the family members of people struggling with opiate addiction to have access to naloxone. But State Rep. Sara Gideon (D), the primary sponsor of the legislation, told the Huffington Post that the governor’s chief health policy adviser has already indicated that LePage won’t support the measure.
“His main objection is his belief — and I have to emphasize ‘his belief’ because there is no evidence that supports this at all — his belief that increasing the availability of Narcan or naloxone will lead the drug user or drug abuser to have this feeling of invincibility,” Gideon explained.
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