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Pallone on Opioid Bill Being Signed into Law

Oct 24, 2018
Press Release

Energy and Commerce Ranking Member Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ) issued the following statement following the signing of H.R. 6, the Substance Use-Disorder Prevention that Promotes Opioid Recovery and Treatment (SUPPORT) for Patients and Communities Act into law by President Trump:

“The opioid package being signed into law today makes important, incremental changes to support those affected by the opioid crisis. I’m particularly proud of several Democratic-led provisions that will expand access to treatment for those suffering from opioid use disorders. Specifically, the new law will expand access to medication-assisted treatment, one of the major challenges that we continue to face in the fight against this epidemic, and it will improve coverage under Medicare and Medicaid. The law also includes strong, new enforcement tools that will allow the Food and Drug Administration to combat illicit drug importation. All of these provisions make a real difference in the fight against the opioid epidemic.

“Despite touting this new law today, President Trump and Congressional Republicans continue to threaten to undermine the health care that Americans rely on for opioid treatment. It is disingenuous at best to promise relief to people struggling with opioid addiction while also attempting to cut funding for Medicaid and eliminate protections for people with pre-existing conditions, which include opioid use disorder. Rather than cutting funding for those seeking treatment and allowing insurance companies to discriminate against people struggling with addiction, we should be focused on protecting people’s access to health care and making sure they can get treatment.

“While this opioid package builds on our prior work to respond to the opioid crisis, we cannot forget the tremendous harm Republican policies would inflict on the same people this package seeks to help.”