ODCP Bimonthly Newsletter July 2020- Legislative Update


Dispensing nearly 1,000 doses of naloxone in two counties during a single day is a logistical feat. Fortunately, that task has been made easier by House Bill 4102, which was passed during the 2020 Regular Session of the West Virginia Legislature. 

In the past, only licensed healthcare providers were permitted to dispense naloxone to those in need. However, changes to West Virginia Code made by House Bill 4102 allows trained volunteers to dispense naloxone, thus enabling increased distribution and expanding community access.

Given these changes, a group of state and local public health leaders are planning a one-day naloxone giveaway event for Kanawha and Putnam counties. With numerous dispensing sites scattered across the two counties, the group hopes to improve public access to naloxone where supplies have often been too few. In 2019, the number of individuals in Kanawha and Putnam counties who were administered naloxone for a suspected opioid-related overdose prior to EMS arrival was far lower than some other counties with comparable populations (see chart below). This indicates that community access to naloxone in Kanawha and Putnam counties is lower than many other counties, especially Cabell. 


The event, which was recently named “Help Save Lives: Free Naloxone Day,” is scheduled for September 2 and is open to the public. People at risk of overdosing, or anyone who knows someone who might be at risk, are encouraged to pick up free naloxone supplies. Trained volunteers will be present from 8:00 AM to 6:00 PM to hand out supplies and informational brochures. A full list of distribution sites will be shared once details are finalized. 

For more information about the event, please email joe.solomon@cchswv.org.

Contact Information

Luke Yingling- odcp@wv.gov