New Electronic Form To Be Used To Report Certain Drug Overdoses
By David Doolittle


The Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) has created an online form for physicians and other health care professionals to report overdoses from controlled substances such as opioids, cocaine, and methamphetamines.

Previously, physicians reported overdoses from these “Penalty Group 1” drugs only via phone call or by faxing a paper form to the Texas Poison Center Network.

The new electronic form replaces phone and fax reporting. It is expected to make reporting and collecting overdose data more efficient, DSHS officials said.

State law requires physicians or the person in charge of a facility in which an overdose occurs or is treated to report the overdose to the DSHS.

The law states the following be included in reports:

  • Date of overdose;
  • Type of controlled substance used;
  • Sex and approximate age of patient;
  • Symptoms associated with overdose;
  • Extent of treatment necessary; and
  • Patient outcome. 

However, any details about the patient’s identity, including name and address, should not be reported.

Penalty Group 1 drugs include opiates, opioids, cocaine, and opiate and opium derivatives.

Find more information, including the online form, on the DSHS website. You can also get more information by emailing

Last Updated On

August 06, 2019

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David Doolittle


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Dave Doolittle is editor of Texas Medicine and Texas Medicine Today. Dave grew up in Austin, where he attended culinary school as well as the University of Texas. He spent years covering Central Texas for the Austin American-Statesman newspaper. He is the father of two girls, a proud Longhorn, and an avid motorsports fan.

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