NYS approves measure, named for Buffalo man, aimed at battling the opioid crisis

Posted at 12:46 AM, May 14, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-14 00:48:39-04

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — New York's Democrat-controlled state Senate has approved legislation aimed at battling the opioid crisis.

The bill sponsored by Sen. Pete Harckham, D-Westchester, was passed Monday. It would require addiction treatment providers to contact pre-designated loved ones when someone undergoing treatment shows potentially life-threatening behaviors such as testing positive for drugs.

Harckham says his "Stephen's Law" proposal also would allow treatment providers to release details of a patient's behavior or condition to up to three people designated by the person undergoing treatment.

The measure is named for Stephen Canastraro Jr., of Buffalo, who died two days after testing positive for fentanyl and oxycodone. His mother says his treatment provider didn't tell her about the results even though he had consented to having his toxicology tests released to her.