Missouri lawmakers took steps this year to address the growing number of drug overdoses, but health care advocates say more work remains.
The Legislature has voted to make it easier to get medicine that counteracts opiate overdoses. But lawmakers did not advance proposals to grant legal protections for people calling 911 to report overdoses.
Missouri is the only state without a system to track prescription drugs. Advocates have tried creating one for more than a decade, but lawmakers have resisted due to privacy concerns. That has prompted some local governments to create tracking systems of their own.
Some lawmakers have said medical marijuana could provide an alternative to painkillers for patients with cancer and other chronic diseases. The House twice rejected proposals to allow doctors to prescribe it.