LD 1375
Session - 128th Maine Legislature
LR 1888
Item 1
Bill Tracking, Additional Documents Chamber Status

An Act To Prevent Overdose Deaths and Infectious Diseases by Establishing Safer Drug Use Facilities

Be it enacted by the People of the State of Maine as follows:

Sec. 1. 5 MRSA §20054  is enacted to read:

§ 20054 Safer drug use facilities

1 Certification.   The department shall certify a safer drug use facility, referred to in this section as "a facility," that in the department's determination meets the requirements under subsection 2. A municipal health department under Title 22, section 411, subsection 10, community-based organization, hospital or health center may apply to the department for certification of a facility pursuant to this subsection with the consent of the municipal officers of the municipality in which the facility is located. The department shall notify the applicant of the department's determination within 45 days of receipt of the application, and, if the department denies the application, the department shall include with the denial a written explanation of the department's determination, including an explanation of any defects in the application that may prevent the certification of the proposed facility. An applicant who receives a denial under this subsection may appeal the denial to the commission; a majority vote of the commission is binding. A denied applicant may reapply for certification at any time after denial.
2 Facility requirements.   In order to qualify for certification, a facility shall:
A Provide a location supervised by a health care professional and other trained staff where a client may self-administer previously obtained drugs;
B Provide sterile drug use supplies, collect used hypodermic needles and syringes and provide secure hypodermic needle and syringe disposal services;
C Provide overdose prevention education;
D Distribute or administer naloxone hydrochloride;
E Provide testing for human immunodeficiency virus, viral hepatitis and sexually transmitted infections and educate clients on the risks of contracting human immunodeficiency virus, viral hepatitis and sexually transmitted infections;
F Answer questions about safer injection practices;
G Administer first aid, monitor clients for potential overdose and administer medications to relieve an acute exacerbation of a health condition;
H Provide referrals to services, including substance use disorder counseling and treatment, reproductive health education and services and wound care; and
I Provide reasonable and adequate security of the facility and equipment.
3 Facility revenue.   A facility may bill an insurance carrier of a client for the costs of covered services; accept a donation, grant or other financial assistance; and apply for a grant from the department or any nonprofit or private organization.
4 Report to department.   A facility shall collect and report to the department aggregate demographic information, data acquired at the facility level and outcomes and other information required by the department under subsection 5. A facility shall keep private health information confidential in accordance with federal and state law regarding confidentiality of personal health care information and may not disclose the information without the explicit written consent of the client who is the subject of the health care information, except as required by federal or state law. A facility shall provide a detailed report under this subsection to the department on or before November 15th of each year for the prior 12-month period ending on October 31st.
5 Department duties.   The department shall define by rule the demographic data and data acquired at the facility level to be collected and reported by a facility under subsection 4 and evaluate the data provided by the facility to gauge program effectiveness and identify best practices in the operation of a facility. The department shall evaluate the effectiveness of all facilities certified under subsection 1 and submit a report of the evaluation accompanied by individual facility reports to the joint standing committee of the Legislature having jurisdiction over health and human services matters on or before January 31st of each year.
6 Immunity from arrest and prosecution.   A person acting in accordance with this section, including a client who uses the services of a facility; a staff member and contractor of a facility, including a health care professional, manager, employee and volunteer; and a facility's owner, may not be:
A Arrested, prosecuted or subject to any civil or administrative penalty, including civil or disciplinary action by a professional licensing board;
B Denied any right or privilege for involvement in the operation or use of services of a facility; or
C Subject to the seizure or forfeiture of any real or personal property used in connection with a facility.

This subsection does not apply to a person engaging in any activity not authorized or approved under this section.

7 Tolerance zone.   A person may not be arrested, prosecuted or subject to a revocation of probation for a violation of Title 17-A, section 1107-A, 1108, 1111 or 1111-A if the grounds for the arrest, prosecution or probation revocation were obtained within 0.5 miles of the facility.
8 Rules.   The department may adopt routine technical rules as defined by Title 5, chapter 375, subchapter 2-A to carry out the provisions of this section.

Sec. 2. Establishment of safer drug use facilities; review. The Department of Health and Human Services shall certify 2 safer drug use facilities under the Maine Revised Statutes, Title 5, section 20054 in locations the department determines to most effectively reach the appropriate populations in the State. The department shall review the effectiveness of the facilities to determine whether to continue operation of the facilities or certify additional facilities. On or before November 4, 2020, the department shall submit a report on the review and the department's conclusions to the joint standing committee of the Legislature having jurisdiction over health and human services matters.


This bill directs the Department of Health and Human Services to certify 2 facilities in the State to provide safe and secure locations for people to self-administer previously obtained drugs. The bill requires the facilities to have health care personnel and other trained staff, to provide information concerning drug overdoses and diseases associated with drug use, to administer first aid or other medications in case of an overdose and to provide referrals to other services clients of the facilities may need. The bill immunizes from arrest or prosecution clients and staff members acting in accordance with the provisions of the bill and creates a tolerance zone with 0.5 miles of the facility. The facilities are directed to report certain demographic and other information to the department, which is directed to analyze the information and report to the joint standing committee of the Legislature having jurisdiction over health and human services matters. The department is also directed to review the effectiveness of the facilities to determine whether to open additional facilities.

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