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California inmate lawyers want more use of life-saving drug

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — A pair of suspected fatal overdoses on California’s death row this week is adding urgency to an effort to allow prison guards and even inmates to carry a drug that can save the lives of those who overdose on opioids.

Steven Fama of the nonprofit Prison Law Office said Thursday that attorneys made the request earlier this year to corrections officials.

Prison nurses began carrying the overdose-reversing drug naloxone in 2016.

Officials could not immediately comment on the request to expand its availability.

Statistics provided to the Associated Press show 40 California inmates died of drug overdoses last year.

Officials are investigating drug smuggling at the prison as they await autopsies Friday for Joseph Perez Jr. and Herminio Serna, who died while awaiting execution at San Quentin State Prison.

Associated Press

Associated Press

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