Gov. Chris Christie has signed a waiver allowing first responders to carry and administer medication to treat drug overdose patients in emergency situations.
Christie signed a waiver Friday authorizing more than 28,000 certified EMTs and EMT-trained police officers to carry and administer Narcan, which counteracts the effects of heroin and other opioid drugs.
It is administered through a nasal spray or injection into a muscle.
Current Department of Health regulations don't allow EMTs to administer Narcan. They will now be able to do so after completing a training course approved by the department.
Christie says the move fits in with the state's Overdose Prevention Act, which includes a measure shielding someone overdosing on drugs and those who get them medical assistance from prosecution if they act in good faith.