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Anti-Heroin Proposal Easily Passes House

Amanda Vinicky

The Illinois House overwhelmingly approved a plan that seeks to curb the abuse of heroin and painkilling drugs.

It's touted as a comprehensive package - though it was scaled back from its original version.

As painkillers are often seen as a gateway to heroin, the measure says doctors have to record the medical need when they prescribe narcotics for months at time. It enhances an electronic database that's used to make sure patients aren't doctor-shopping and stockpiling pills.

"It deals with the issue of disposing of old pharmaceuticals that people aren't using, so that they can't get back into them or their families can't reach into their medicine chests," said Democratic Rep. Lou Lang of Skokie. “(It) creates a plan for drug education in our schools and not just simply the old 'just say no' approach.”

The legislation also requires police and firefighters to have a heroin antidote available. Despite Republicans' concerns about costs, no one voted against it.

Amanda Vinicky moved to Chicago Tonight on WTTW-TV PBS in 2017.
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