Home News Ohio Mandates Reporting of Non-Fatal Drug Overdoses to Health Department

Ohio Mandates Reporting of Non-Fatal Drug Overdoses to Health Department


In a significant move to combat the overdose crisis, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine lauded the approval of a new administrative rule requiring emergency departments to report non-fatal drug overdoses to the Ohio Department of Health (ODH). The Joint Committee on Agency Rule Review (JCARR) greenlit the addition of rule 3701-3-16 to the Ohio Administrative Code, slated to be effective from April 8.

Governor DeWine emphasized the necessity of relentless efforts to tackle the overdose crisis, support individuals in recovery, and promote wellness to prevent addiction. The new rule aims to provide state officials with a more accurate and up-to-date understanding of non-fatal overdoses in Ohio. By enhancing ODH’s ability to identify trends, including repeat overdoses, the rule could facilitate swifter identification of populations or areas disproportionately affected by non-fatal overdoses.

Additionally, the gathered data will aid in determining strategies and resource allocation, such as treatment referrals or the distribution of naloxone and fentanyl test strips to prevent overdoses, particularly in high-burden populations or regions.

RecoveryOhio Director Aimee Shadwick highlighted the importance of the new rule in improving coordination of care for individuals with a history of drug overdose, citing studies that link recent non-fatal overdoses to an elevated risk of death from subsequent overdoses.

ODH Director Bruce Vanderhoff, M.D., MBA, expressed optimism about the potential of the new reporting feature to reduce drug overdoses, alleviate the burden on families and communities, and ultimately save lives.

Governor DeWine’s administration has prioritized efforts to curb drug overdoses, with initiatives like expanding naloxone accessibility by 42% since 2022. This proactive approach has yielded positive outcomes, reflected in a 5% decrease in unintentional drug overdose fatalities among Ohio residents in 2022, totaling 4,915 deaths, compared to a marginal 1% rise in overdose deaths nationwide during the same period.

For individuals seeking access to naloxone, RecoveryOhio provides the medicine at no cost. Visit naloxone.ohio.gov to order this lifesaving medication.