New York Law on Heroin and Opioid Use in New York State

Sister Johnice gathered together with political and community leaders at

Evergreen Commons in Buffalo New York.


Today Wednesday June 22, 2016 was a historic day in New York State. Sister M. Johnice Rzadkiewicz C.S.S.F., representing the Diocese of Buffalo and Michael Gilhooly (Assistant Director at Response to Love Center) were invited guests of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo as he signed the bill that invests nearly $200 Million to combat the epidemic of heroin and opioid abuse. New York State leads the nation with the most aggressive plan to combat the epidemic.



  • Mandate insurance companies to cover immediate access for needed inpatient treatment for as long as such treatment is needed.
  • Mandate insurance companies immediately cover medication and manage withdrawal and support recovery.
  • Require insurance companies cover overdose reversal medication kits for addicted individuals and their families.
  • Create 270 more treatment beds and 2,335 more medication-assisted treatment slots across the state.
  • Increased access to family and peer support and recovery resources.


  • Lower limits for initial opioid prescriptions from 30 to 7 days.
  • Mandate ongoing education on opioid and pain management for doctors and other prescribers to stop over prescribing.
  • Robust consumer education programs by pharmacists and other health providers on the risks of opioid addiction and available treatment options.