“Rep. Hal Rogers (R-Ky.) and Rep. Stephen F. Lynch (D-Mass.) are bringing together Republicans and Democrats to address the crisis of prescription drug misuse that has challenged red and blue states alike. The bipartisan Congressional Caucus on Prescription Drug Abuse was first initiated in 2010, and the lawmakers say now is a critical time to relaunch the caucus and continue its work.
‘In addition to providing like-minded members with a forum to share concerns and best practices from their respective districts, it also enables members to collaborate on a bipartisan basis on federal policies aimed at reducing the scourge of opioid addiction and abuse,’ Rogers tells Behavioral Healthcare Executive in an email. ‘On the heels of CARA [The Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act of 2016], the caucus will continue to look for opportunities to ensure that our federal government has sufficient resources and policies in place to respond holistically, incorporating law enforcement, treatment, education and research.’
Rogers says the continuing resolution on federal spending for the start of 2017 has fully funded the $500 million authorized by the 21st Century Cures Act for states to respond to the opioid crisis. States and territories will be awarded funds through a formula based on unmet needs for opioid use disorder treatment and overdose deaths. He also says the Department of Health and Human Services has already taken the first steps to award funding to states.”
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