CCO State House Editor Gail Reicken Comments On Legislative Fight Against Opioids


Sen Merritt has announced his legislative goals on the fight against opioids.

He says this year he wants the legislature to pass mandatory reporting to INSPECT , a statewide drug take back program, mandatory lockable vials and reports of Naloxone accessible to providers.

Sen Merritt and Retired Sen Pat Miller have been leaders in drug issues for several years. But one drug issue that our State seems desperate for this same kind of energy is Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS).

NAS occurs when a baby is born dependent on the opioid because mother was taking it. It is costly to attend to baby while in the hospital, baby can have lifelong complications and professionals have told stories of the horrific withdrawal infants suffer.

There has been legislation to provide a structure for gathering data, coordinating efforts and presenting findings to the Commission on the Improvement of the Status of Children (CISC).

CISC’s Child Safety and Services Committee has as one of its 2017 three year goals “ to coordinate snd communicate child safety efforts with Indiana Perinatal Quality Improvement Collaborative”.

Let’s hope the CISC steps up efforts and joins in with Sen Merritt where productive to continue aggressive progress on lessoning NAS  in our infants.


Gail Riecken

City County Observer State House Editor


  1. Opiods and alcohol easily cross the placental membrane between mother and fetus. They severely interrupt the intense REM sleep of the infant’s developing brain, doing permanent damage. Read Why We Sleep, a fascinating book study on how important that time is to us all … HDA

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