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Bertino-Tarrant: “It’s our duty to equip our emergency professionals with the tools to prevent drug related deaths”

nalaxone 100417PLAINFIELD- Emergency professionals will now have easier access to the life-saving drug Naloxone to save Will County residents’ lives.

State Senator Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant (D-Shorewood) is proud to announce Illinois now has a Standing Order to allow eligible organizations, mostly pharmacies and opioid overdose education and naloxone distribution (OEND) programs, to provide naloxone to any person without a direct prescription.

“The opioid epidemic does not see race, color or socioeconomic status; it is a crisis affecting every community across Illinois,” Bertino-Tarrant said. “Naloxone gives us a way to save lives. It’s our duty to equip emergency professionals with the tools to prevent drug related deaths.”

Naloxone is a non-addictive prescription medication that, if used while someone is having a heroin overdose, can save the person’s life. It is more commonly referred to as Narcan. 

With Illinois’ standing order, insurers such as Medicaid and Medicare can be billed. Eligible individuals must complete appropriate training on naloxone administration to use the program.

In 2016, there were a record number of heroin related deaths in Will County, an increase of more than 40 percent from the previous year.  According to the Will County coroner’s office, 77 people died in Will County due to opioid overdoses last year.

Bertino-Tarrant has been working to end the opioid epidemic in Illinois by expanding educational resources to Will County residents.

The new law she championed this year requires the Illinois Department of Human Services (DHS) to create and maintain a website to educate people on the effects of heroin and prescription opioid abuse. The website will include the warning signs of heroin and opioid addiction, helpful tips for parents on how to discuss the dangers of addiction with their children, available treatment options and services, and other related information.

“We need to provide every possible resource and assistance we can as a state to address the heroin and opioid addiction problems many face throughout Illinois,” Bertino-Tarrant said. “Addiction is hurting families in Will County. Educating area residents will help us alleviate and end the opioid overdose epidemic.”

Bertino-Tarrant urges area residents with questions on how to take advantage of resources to help fight opioid addiction to call her Plainfield office at (815) 254-4211.

Hastings works to make sure Illinois meets 21st century challenges

cyber month 100417TINLEY PARK- State Senator Michael E. Hastings (D-Tinley Park) is proud to announce the state of Illinois will be observing National Cybersecurity Awareness Month throughout October.

“National Cybersecurity Awareness Month is a good opportunity for Illinois residents to educate themselves on new laws and scams to protect their personal information,” Hastings said. “There are a number of resources available and new laws that will help us meet the technological challenges of the 21st century.”

Bush: Expanded access to overdose reversal drug will save lives

NalaxoneSPRINGFIELD – Senator Melinda Bush (D-Grayslake) issued the following statement in response to the release of the Illinois Naloxone Standing Order:

“Naloxone, or Narcan, is a lifesaving drug that is able to reverse the effects of opioid overdoses, which have been occurring at an alarming rate in Illinois,” Bush said. “In 2015, I championed legislation to make Narcan more accessible and affordable for law enforcement agencies. Since taking effect, Narcan has been used by officers to save lives of Illinoisans across the state. I am pleased that the governor issued an order that will make it even easier for first responders and law enforcement officers to administer Narcan and save lives.”

Under current law, a prescription is needed to dispense naloxone. The Standing Order issued yesterday acts as a prescription and allows pharmacists, pharmacies and opioid overdose education and naloxone distribution programs like law enforcement agencies, health departments and community-based organizations to acquire and distribute naloxone.

Murphy honors Wallace for education leadership

State Senator Laura Murphy and Superintendent Ken WallaceMAINE TOWNSHIP — Maine Township students today have more opportunities to explore career options in high school – and are more likely to have successful, fulfilling careers later in life – thanks to the work of Superintendent Ken Wallace.

Wallace was honored Monday evening by State Senator Laura Murphy (D-Des Plaines) for his extraordinary leadership with Maine Township High School District 207. He was recently recognized as the 2018 state and national champion of the year by the Association for Career and Technical Education for his efforts to improve, promote and develop career and technical education in the district.