- Associated Press - Wednesday, May 27, 2015

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - A state Senate committee has approved a bill that would expand the use of a drug overdose antidote across Ohio.

The proposal is aimed at reducing the state’s record-high number of fatal overdoses from heroin and painkillers, which are the leading cause of accidental death in Ohio.

The measure previously was passed by the House. It would allow distribution of naloxone by individuals authorized by a doctor, including an addict or a relative or friend. It also would allow pharmacies to distribute the drug without a prescription.

The Senate Health and Human Services committee passed the bill Wednesday. The panel added a requirement that the state Health Department and Medical Board be consulted when rules are developed for pharmacies distributing the antidote.

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