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November 27, 2023

Messenger: A St. Louis man is pushing for Narcan on US flights. Will Congress agree?

Credit: STL Today

ST. LOUIS — This is how a bill becomes a law.

In October, he followed up with Budzinski’s office to see whether she was going to file a bill. But, as it turned out, somebody else already had. In May, Rep. David Trone, a Maryland Democrat, filed H.R. 3616, a bill that would direct the FAA to require Narcan on all airline flights. “With opioid overdoses on the rise, airlines need to be prepared to handle a possible overdose on board. It’s just common sense,” Trone said in a news release announcing the legislation.

Trone’s nephew died of an opioid overdose in 2016, about a year before Gaal’s son died of suicide. Now both men, in their own way, are advocating for a new law that might save the next person’s son or nephew, mother or father, or total stranger, by making sure that Narcan is readily available when an overdose occurs.

Trone’s bill has been assigned to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure. In a House that has struggled to elect a speaker, there has been no action taken on it.

There are now 18 co-sponsors, including three Republicans. Earlier this year, the House passed a five-year FAA re-authorization bill sponsored by Rep. Sam Graves, a Republican from northwest Missouri. It didn’t include Trone’s language, but instead has a passage that calls on the FAA administrator to “review and update” the medical kit regulations on flights, with specific attention paid to opioid overdoses.

Trone’s bill is not yet a law. But an idea born from tragedy is gaining momentum. One man’s voice inspired another, and that voice led to a member of Congress adding their name to the cause.

Read full article here.