911 Good Samaritan Law Inventory

Published: 22 November 2022| Version 2 | DOI: 10.17632/r65b6hrdhm.2
Shane Reader


911 Good Samaritan Laws (GSLs) extend limited legal immunity to persons reporting emergency overdoses who may themselves be in possession of controlled substances or engaging in related activities. The 911 Good Samaritan Law Inventory inductively catalogs each GSL feature across every state from ratification to June 2022. It catalogs the full breadth of protected offenses, all burdens placed on Good Samaritans, the strength of immunity, and exemptions to protection. The inventory complements existing agglomerative policy surveillance databases by mapping features inductively to reflect their heterogenous implementation across states. The materials are formatted by MonQcle, developed by Law Atlas at Temple University's Center Public Health Law Research.


Steps to reproduce

The 911 Good Samaritan Law Inventory Protocol document contains the full research protocol. GSLs were identified at their respective state legislative websites using the search terms "overdose," "opioid," or "Good Samaritan." We identified the ratifying bill and subsequent amendments using annotations or by identifying year-over-year changes and associating them with session law in the corresponding year, creating a complete account of the legislative history of the GSL statute. Provisions pertaining to materials other than controlled substances (counterfeit substances and controlled substance analogs), alcohol, and registered controlled substance distributors and manufacturers (such as pharmacies) are excluded. Features were abstracted inductively, adding new dimensions to the recording instrument to accommodate newly-discovered features. Protections indicate offenses immunized in the GSL, although a lack of protection may conversely indicate the state does not enforce such an offense. (For example, Alaska does not criminalize possession of paraphernalia, so this immunity is lacking in the GSL.)


University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston


Policy, Crime Policy