10.26.17

U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin Statement on President Trump’s Opioid Announcement

Yesterday, Senator Baldwin introduced Combating the Opioid Epidemic Act to invest $45 billion in state, local efforts

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin released the following statement on President Trump’s opioid announcement today:

“I’ve seen firsthand how the opioid epidemic is devastating families and communities across Wisconsin. Washington must step up to be a stronger partner for local communities in this fight and President Trump’s announcement fails to match words with action. In Wisconsin, the people working in our communities to combat this crisis need emergency investments for local prevention, treatment and recovery efforts. Local law enforcement, health providers, and the families who face this epidemic everyday need action, support and resources to confront this emergency.”

Background:

Yesterday, Senator Baldwin helped introduce the Combating the Opioid Epidemic Act to strengthen our country’s approach to combating the opioid epidemic and address some critical shortcomings, including the Administration’s unwillingness to make a long-term investment in the fight.

The legislation would invest $45 billion for prevention, detection, surveillance and treatment of opioids. This is the same level of funding proposed by Senate Republicans earlier this summer.

Specifically, the Combating the Opioid Epidemic Act would:

  • Authorize and appropriate $4,474,800,000 for substance abuse programs for the individual states for each of fiscal years 2018 through 2027; build upon bipartisanship by adding this funding to the Account for the State Response to the Opioid Abuse Crisis, which was created by the 21st Century Cures Act; and expand the use of funding already allowed under 21st Century Cures, so that states may also use this money for detection, surveillance and treatment of co-occurring infections, as well as for surveillance, data collection and reporting on the number of opioid overdose deaths.
  • Promote research on addiction and pain related to substance abuse, and authorizes and appropriates $50,400,000 for each of fiscal years 2018 through 2022. Under the bill, the National Institutes of Health would be responsible for distributing this money.
  • Provide stable, long-term funding, a total of $45 billion over ten years to the states and over five years to research efforts. This is similar to the stable, long-term investment that Senate Republicans proposed as a response to the opioid emergency.
  • Not replace coverage for treatment under Medicaid or the treatment requirements for private insurance in the Affordable Care Act. Both of these remain critical for combating the opioid abuse epidemic.