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First-in-Nation Law to Require Overdose Reversing Nasal Spray in All First Aid Kits

Assemblymember Haney’s AB 1976 will require opioid overdose reversing Naloxone Nasal Spray in first aid kits across the State.

For immediate release:
  • Nate Allbee
  • (415) 756-0561

SACRAMENTO – Assemblymember Matt Haney (D-San Francisco) has introduced legislation that requires first aid kits in all workplaces in California to contain naloxone nasal spray — a lifesaving medication that can completely reverse a deadly opioid overdose by being sprayed in the nostrils. The medication has no significant side effects and has no effect at all when mistakenly given to a person who has not taken opioids.

For the first time in California history, drug overdoses have become deadlier than car accidents and homicides combined. In 2022 over 7,300 deaths were due to opioid overdoses with a growing number of those deaths being youth. 1 out of every 5 youth deaths in California is now caused by an opioid overdose.

According to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration more than half of the counterfeit prescription pills being trafficked in communities across the country now contain a potentially deadly dose of fentanyl. 

“If fentanyl continues to be more accessible than naloxone, we’re going to keep seeing an increase in overdose deaths in our communities,” said Haney, who chairs the Assembly’s Fentanyl and Opioid Overdose Prevention Committee. “Until we can cut-off the supply of fentanyl to our state, we have a responsibility to make sure that we’re saving as many lives as possible, especially the lives of our youth.”

All California businesses with employees are currently required to have a first aid kit in the breakroom or common space. AB 1976 will dramatically increase the accessibility of naloxone, making California a world leader in access to the life saving medication. Any person that sees someone exhibiting the symptoms of an overdose will know that naloxone is on hand in the first aid kit of the nearest business. 

The legislation requires that Cal-OSHA, who currently is responsible for enforcing employer first aid kits regulations, develop standards and enforcement practices to ensure naloxone is in all first aid kits.

“I’ve heard from hundreds of family members whose loved ones would still be alive if naloxone had been on site,” said Haney. “Naloxone is a miracle drug in many ways. But it can’t perform miracles if it’s not there when you need it.”