From an editorial in the (Wilmington) Star News on Wednesday:
As a deadly epidemic of illegal opioid use plagues our state, the General Assembly wisely has broadened access to the prescription drug that can reverse overdoses.
Senate Bill 734 was signed into law Monday by Gov. Pat McCrory, and provides a standing order for pharmacies to dispense the drug to people who believe they may need it to help someone at risk of overdosing on prescription opioids and also heroin.
The common-sense law, which passed unopposed in both legislative houses, also protects those who prescribe or administer the drug from criminal and civil liability.
We previously noted that we witnessed the drug save the life of an elderly relative whose prescribed amount proved too much. Even when legally prescribed and properly dosed, opioids can sometimes prove deadly. In our case, it was a paramedic that administered the life-saving antidote. Now, most anyone who has a legitimate reason can keep naloxone on hand.
We remain in the grips of an opioid epidemic, and there is much more the legislature, Congress and health care providers need to do to end it. But this is a big first step in making the epidemic less deadly.
North Carolina becomes the third state to pass such a provision. That sets a good example.