STATEHOUSE (March 9, 2017) — A bill authored by State Sen. Jeff Raatz (R-Centerville) to establish an opioid abuse treatment program passed the Senate recently by a vote of 43-7.
Senate Bill 499 would establish a three-year opioid abuse treatment pilot program in Allen, Marion and Wayne counties. Under this legislation, opioid abusers who are at serious risk of death or injury due to their addiction could be involuntary committed to an appropriate facility.
SB 499 also states that if a person was charged or convicted of a drug offense and received an overdose- intervention drug for an acute opioid overdose, they would have priority admission in a variety of diversion programs offering treatment for those with addictive disorders.
“The goal is to keep opioid abusers long enough to detoxify, start thinking rationally, accept help and kick their addiction,” Raatz said. “This is an ugly problem, and the answer certainly may not be glamorous.”
SB 499 now moves to the House of Representatives and was assigned to the House Committee on Public Health.
A high-resolution photo of State Sen. Jeff Raatz is available by clicking here.