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50-state survey Substance Use Prevention and Harm ReductionOpioid Misuse and Overdose Prevention

Overdose Reporting Requirements

December 6, 2017

Overview

This resource provides a description of the laws and regulations governing reporting of overdoses in the jurisdictions that require or explicitly permit it.

In 2015 alone, over 52,000 Americans died of drug overdose, with most of these deaths due in whole or part to opioids, both prescription painkillers and illicit drugs like heroin. Recently, powerful synthetic versions of the drug fentanyl have begun to drive a significant increase in overdose deaths. It’s imperative that health departments and other relevant actors are provided with accurate, timely and actionable information on drug-related overdose. Unfortunately, variations among jurisdictions in determining and reporting causes of death along with delays in obtaining and reporting fatality data often result in an incomplete and out-of-date view into this rapidly evolving epidemic.

Most states have not changed law or policy to require timely reporting of non-fatal overdose. Because all states have a system by which certain diseases and conditions are required to be reported to the state health department, adding non-fatal overdose to the list of reportable conditions may be an effective and cost-effective way of improving access to this important data.

State Overdose Reporting Requirements

This resource provides a snapshot of current and proposed laws, regulations, and sub-regulatory sources governing mandatory disease reporting and a description of the laws and regulations governing reporting of overdoses in the jurisdictions that require or explicitly permit it.

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