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Bill Calls For County Coroners To Track Overdose Deaths
Updated January 5, 2017 4:22 AM
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(INDIANAPOLIS) - Indiana county coroners would be required to track overdose deaths and specify which drugs were involved as part of a bill being floated in the Indiana statehouse.

WISH TV reports, the idea behind the legislation is that by requiring Indiana counties to track these deaths, the state could get a better grasp over the scope of Indiana's struggle with opioids and determine a way to address the epidemic.

The bill's sponsor, Sen. Jim Merritt, R - Indianapolis, says he believes the tracking of the data could help the state come up with solutions to fix the problem.

Merritt says the bill was drafted broadly so that if counties decide to rely on the state's toxicology lab for testing, the state would be reimbursed. But that could create a backlog of cases.

Merritt said he would rather "get it right" referring to the cause of deaths than be expedient.

Senate Bill 74 also would allow for counties that use private labs for drug testing to be reimbursed by the state. Either way, there is a chance it could cost up to $1 million.

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