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CSHB 225 was introduced by the Senate Criminal Justice Committee after our original analysis on the bill as reported to the House floor. The committee substitute would not allow it to be a defense to prosecution if an officer was already in the process of making an arrest. It does not preclude the admission of evidence from an officer responding to an emergency medical request.
First chamber analysis:
HB 225 would allow a defense of prosecution for possession of controlled substances, if someone was requesting emergency medical assistance in response to a possible overdose and they were the first person to request medical assistance.
This bill would also authorize the prescription of an opioid antagonist to a person at risk for an opioid overdose or to a family member or friend of such a person who would be in a position to provide assistance in the event of an overdose.
HB 225 is a stronger bill with the additional provisions added. We continue to support HB 225.First chamber analysis below:
HB 225 would remove a disincentive to calling for medical assistance when someone is possibly overdosing due to a controlled substance. This would also enable friends and family members of opioid abusers to have medication on hand to potentially save the life of a person who does overdose. We support this bill for promoting self-responsibility and enabling individuals to more easily assist in the case of an overdose. Due to its support of personal responsibility we support HB 225.