FRANKFORT — The Kentucky Senate has passed a bill meant to fight the state’s heroin problem.

The Senate on Thursday voted 36 to 0 in support of the bill, which includes multiple provisions to address a growing epidemic of heroin abuse across the state. It enforces new punishments and funds treatment.

Eric Specht, who founded the anti-heroin group North Kentucky Hates Heroin after his son Nicolas died from an overdose last year, told lawmakers that the bill’s expansion of treatment options would have helped his son.

“There is nothing like being a parent and your child comes to you and says, ‘I need help,’ and you can’t offer it to them because there’s just nowhere to send your kid for long-term treatment,” Specht says.

The expansion of treatment efforts in the bill will be paid through Medicaid funds appropriated by the Affordable Care Act.