Thanks for Joining! CEPOP Hosts Successful February Call

Thank you to all who were able to join CEPOP for its February 2020 All-Participants Teleconference last Monday. This past All-Participants Teleconference was a full and impactful agenda beginning with two great presentation from Cece Spitznas and June Sivilli from the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy. The second half of the call focused on identification and confirmation of CEPOP policy priorities for 2020 and organizational outlook for the year ahead.

The next CEPOP All-Participants Teleconference will be held on Monday, March 30th (3:00pm). A calendar appointment and call logistics have been circulated. Please let Matt Rubin know of any related follow-up.


CEPOP All-Participants Meeting Agenda (Feb. 2020)

CEPOP 2020 Workplan and Agenda

ONDCP Presentation Materials

DEA Proposed Rule Aims to Improve Underserved Community’s Access to MAT

In a notice of proposed rulemaking issued February 26, the Drug Enforcement Administration outlined a regulatory shift that would enable individuals registered to dispense controlled substances and medication-assisted treatment to more easily offer narcotic treatment programs via mobile components. The expansion of mobile access will work to address critical treatment gaps for patients in underserved or overburdened communities while also delivering modest savings.

DEA Acting Administrator Uttam Dillon applauded the release of the proposed rule. “Today’s proposal is an important step to improve access to medication assisted therapy, a successful evidence-based practice to treat opioid dependence. DEA is committed to ensuring that these tools and resources are available to everyone, especially in rural areas where treatment options may be limited.” Stakeholders are encouraged to provide public comment on the proposed rule – the deadline for submissions is April 27, 2020.

On Wednesday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Institute on Occupational Safety and Health announced the release of an RFI in response to guidance development on Workplace Supported Recovery for Substance Use Disorders. The ultimate goal of this guidance is to help ensure workers and employers are actively responding to the need for adequate treatment and recovery services. NIOSH is extending an opportunity to provide input on evidence-based approaches to reduce risk factors for substance use among workers and help those who have a substance user disorder in seeking the care they need, assisting in recovery, and staying at or returning to work. Submissions for this RFI are also due on April 27th.

Articles & Resources

DEA Newsroom – DEA Announces Improvements to Medication Assisted Treatment

Federal Register (DEA) – Registration Requirements for Narcotic Treatment Programs With Mobile Components

Faegre Drinker Insights – In Proposed Rulemaking, DEA Looks to Expand Mobile Narcotic Treatment Options

Federal Register (CDC) – Developing a Workplace Supported Recovery Program: A Strategy for Assisting Workers and Employers with the Nation’s Opioid and Substance Use Disorder Epidemics: Request for Information

Energy & Commerce Health Subcommittee to Hold Tuesday Opioid Hearing

On Tuesday, March 3rd, the House Energy & Commerce Subcommittee on Health will host a hearing focused on legislative responses to help address patients struggling with substance use disorders. Building upon the Committee’s prior work on the issue and concurrent release of the House Bipartisan Opioid Task Force’s 2020 agenda (see below), the Subcommittee is slated to work through 14 bills, most of which have received bipartisan support and sponsorship.

In a joint statement, Energy & Commerce Committee Chairman Frank Pallone (NJ) and Health Subcommittee Chair Anna Eshoo (CA) noted, “The Committee has passed several important bills to give federal and state officials new funding and authorities to treat these epidemics, but there is more work to be done.  Next week, the Health Subcommittee will hold a hearing to conduct oversight of the Administration’s implementation of previously enacted legislation and to consider additional legislative proposals to prevent overdoses and help patients.”

Articles & Resources

Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill – AG’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit, Prosecutors Combat Drug Diversion by Health Care Professionals

Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill – Investigation by AG’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit Leads to Charges Against Hospital Nurse

House Energy & Commerce Committee – Health Subcommittee to Hold Legislative Hearing on Proposals to Help Patients with Substance Use Disorders

House Opioid Leaders Release 2020 Legislative Agenda

On Thursday, a bipartisan set of House members released a set of 27 bills that aim to impact a variety of different components required to address and combat the national epidemic. These efforts cover core areas of the opioid response including: prevention, treatment, rural response and workforce development, law enforcement, criminal justice reform, global interdiction efforts, children and families, veterans and prescribing.

As founder and Democratic leader for the bipartisan task force, New Hampshire Representative Ann McLane Kuster noted, “Today we unveiled an ambitious slate of legislation that would significantly bolster our response to our nation’s evolving addiction crisis…Every bill in our agenda is bipartisan, and many will be included in the hearing on [Energy & Commerce Committee] Tuesday. Our agenda tackles underlying challenges in our criminal justice and economic systems that have contributed to this crisis. I look forward to working with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to advance our agenda and bolster prevention efforts, access to long-term treatment and recovery, and support interdiction and law enforcement.” Representative Kuster was flanked by her Republican colleague Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick and Vice-Chairs Donald Norcross (D-VA) and Martha Roby (R-AL).

Each of the bills included in the Task Force’s agenda has been introduced with bipartisan support, building upon similar efforts in 2018 that were incorporated into the landmark SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act.

Articles & Resources

Rep. Kuster Newsroom – Bipartisan Opioid Task Force Announces 2020 Legislative Agenda

What We Read Last Week

Several articles were published last week pertaining to the opioid epidemic, covering a variety of different components of the issue. Links to relevant articles are provided below.

Articles & Resources

Inside Health Policy – Administration’s Delays In Implementing Major Opioid Law Hinder Efforts To Curb Crisis

The Atlantic – The Opioid Epidemic Might Be Much Worse Than We Thought

Addiction – Using Contributing Causes of Death Improves Prediction of Opioid Involvement in Unclassified Drug Overdoses in US Death Records

POLITICO – Trump to tap Home Energy Aid, Substance Abuse Programs to Fight Coronavirus
New York Times – Teaching Children How to Reverse an Overdose

New York Times – Teaching Children How to Reverse an Overdose

Los Angeles Times – A Doctor’s Radical Treatment for Pregnant Addicts? Get Them Clean.

National Safety Council – NSC Unveils Comprehensive Plan for Presidential Candidates to Combat Opioid Misuse

Bloomberg Government – A $50 Billion Opioid Deal Gets Backing From 7 More States

Philadelphia Inquirer – South Philadelphia to Become Site of Nation’s First Supervised-Injection Facility, Organizers Say

U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania – U.S. Department of Justice to Appeal District Court Ruling Regarding Drug Injection Sites

Highmark Newsroom – Highmark to Launch First Technology-Enabled Opioid Treatment Program in West Virginia

Journal of the American Medical Association – Association of Take-Home Naloxone and Overdose Reversals Performed by Patients in an Opioid Treatment Program

Addiction – Opioid Agonist Treatment and Fatal Overdose Risk in a State-Wide US Population Receiving Opioid Use Disorder Services

DEA Newsroom – Rawlins Doctor Pleads Guilty to Unlawful Distribution of Pain Pills

Department of Justice – Tennessee Podiatrist Pleads Guilty to Unlawfully Distributing Controlled Substances

U.S. Attorney for the District of New Jersey – Doctor Described as ‘Candy Man’ and ‘El Chapo Of Opioids’ Admits Distributing Opioids to Patients

This Week’s Calendar

Welcome to March…where things are shaping up to remain busy! On Tuesday, the House Energy & Commerce Committee will work through several bills of priority to the House Bipartisan Opioid Task  Force. While there are no other hearings noticed at this time, we will make additional information available should House or Senate calendars change.

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