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New York lawmakers are considering a bill that would presume that an injured worker who dies of an opioid overdose did so as a result of the original injury and that the death would be compensable.
A.B. 1770, introduced Monday and sent to the Assembly Labor Committee, would revise the state’s workers compensation presumption statute to say “the death of an injured worker due to opioid overdose is compensable where that injured worker was prescribed opioids as a result of his or her workplace injury.”
The state’s existing presumption law states that certain injuries are compensable and that “it shall be presumed (work-related) in the absence of substantial evidence to the contrary.”
The COVID-19 pandemic has slowed the spread of state legislation aimed at curbing opioid use and led to the relaxation of prescription regimens designed to limit the use of the powerful but addictive pain killers.