Washington, D.C.– Today, the Bipartisan Policy Center issued the following statement by Anand Parekh, MD, chief medical advisor, following the passage of H.R. 6, The Substance Use-Disorder Prevention that Promotes Opioid Recovery and Treatment (SUPPORT) for Patients and Communities Act, to address the nation’s opioid epidemic:
“This bipartisan opioid package is a critical step in tackling our country’s devastating opioid crisis. It will not only help to curb illicit opioids and unnecessary prescriptions of these drugs, but expand vital medication assisted treatment that will enhance addiction care. BPC is pleased to see Congress include 13 provisions in the SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act that align with BPC recommendations released last year.
“The opioid overdose epidemic is one of the most important public health challenges of our time, killing nearly 50,000 Americans in 2017 alone from opioid-involved drug overdoses. This crisis is impacting every part of America—urban and rural areas; wealthy, middle-income, and poor; young and old, red states and blue states; and Americans of all races. It’s an epidemic that is quite simply affecting all of us and therefore requires an all-hands-on-deck approach to change its trajectory.
“Moving forward, BPC plans to track federal and state opioid funding to better understand where resources are going, for what purpose, and their impact. The goal is to help inform future policymaking and identify best practices as well as gaps in efforts across the country.”