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Heroin needle, Photo: <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/danielleellis55/13295727434/in/photolist-mfU5xU-mfS6bc-cenaT-Jyndv-4PsCEL-4KNJ9Q-65SpkG-5DbZz4-aDrE9x-aqV1pK-5SviVC-5xG6CF-gpwP73-j2iq6X-65G8XH-jFr6Gt-jFrmQz-jFrE2D-jFsgDv-jFsrcr-jFstic-jFsKi8-jFsKUM-jFsNXk-jFt4zt-jFtoD8-jFtp3W-jFtsqN-jFtvXg-jFtEgG-jFtHrE-jFtW9o-jFtYZJ-jFuhsb-jFunvA-jFuxkq-jFuRzw-jFvoAj-jFvV33-jFso6B-jFsPje-jFsRtp-jFsZkX-jFu469-jFu6w1-jFujoU-jFuAbW-jFv1au-jFvbsy-jFvoMJ">Danielle Sprags</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Heroin needle, Photo: Danielle Sprags, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

NY Legislature passes package of anti-heroin bills

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) New York's Legislature has passed a series of bills to curb heroin and opioid use throughout the state.

The 11 bills, which passed unanimously Thursday, include a requirement for insurance companies to better cover substance-abuse treatment. They also call for a public awareness campaign and harsher penalties for illegal drug distribution.

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Sen. Phil Boyle, chairman of the Senate task force on heroin and opioid addiction, calls it the beginning of the end of New York's heroin epidemic.

The legislation also requires every anti-overdose kit, which contains the drug naloxone, to include an information card on how to administer the drug and how to recognize the symptoms of an overdose.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo was involved in negotiating the bills and is expected to sign them.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved

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