Senate Appropriators Release Initial Bill Text for FY21 Budget

On Tuesday, Senate Appropriators released all twelve of the FY2021 appropriations funding bills and subcommittee allocations, outlining the chamber’s priorities and areas of emphasis heading into lame duck discussions to avoid a full-year continuing resolution. Several programmatic priorities are highlighted throughout the package, including items such as: rural addiction training, medication-assisted treatment accessibility, naloxone co-prescribing, takeback and disposal of unused and unwanted opioids, addressing illicitly manufactured fentanyl and synthetic narcotics, access to abuse-deterrent and non-opioid pain medications, and other items set forth in CARA and the SUPPORT Act and part of a comprehensive, multifaceted response.

CEPOP will continue to track the progress of these bills and alignment with the House language ahead of the expiration of the current CR on December 11th.

Articles & Resources

Senate Appropriations – Committee Releases FY21 Bills in Effort to Advance Process, Produce Bipartisan Results

DEA Seeks to Clarify Regs Around Suspicious Orders

The Drug Enforcement Administration issued a notice of proposed rulemaking last week aiming to better address suspicious orders of controlled substances pursuant to registrant procedures to address “orders received under suspicious circumstances.” The NPRM outlines a “two option framework” of how to address such circumstances under these regulations. Registrants may either choose not to distribute the order, report it to DEA and maintain a file on the encounter or conduct due diligence with appropriate recordkeeping prior to dispensation.

CEPOP looks forward to further discussing the alignment of this NPRM with longstanding organizational priorities and how CEPOP may engage in this process as it relates to better addressing the controlled substance supply chain and improper prescribing and dispensing. A formal notice and comment period is open through January 4, 2021.

Articles & Resources

Federal Register – Suspicious Orders of Controlled Substances (Notice of Proposed Rulemaking)

Sign-on Letter: Elevate ONDCP to Cabinet-Level

As President-elect Biden and the transition team develop a strategy to address a multitude of initiatives come the January 2021 inauguration, a sign-on letter is being circulated among addiction allies urging the new administration to reprioritize the Office of National Drug Control and elevate the Director to a Cabinet-level position. The letter cites previous statements by the President-elect during the 2001 confirmation oh John P. Waters to the role.

“I have argued that Cabinet-level status is necessary to give the position visibility commensurate with the depth of our Nation’s drug problem, providing our drug czar the clout to stop interagency feuding, fight for budgetary resources, and decertify inadequate agency drug budgets.”

You may view the draft letter and add your organization to the growing list of signatories by clicking here.

Please contact Kevin Sabet with any questions.

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

STAT News – Lawmakers Urge Justice Department to Revise $8.3 Billion Settlement with Purdue

Rep. Clark Newsroom – Clark, Rose, Kuster, Trone, Ryan Demand Answers from Department of Justice, Accountability for Purdue Pharma

CBC – Public Health Officials Say Montreal Now Facing Opioid Crisis

Anesthesiology News – Education and Easy Disposal Lower Opioid Supply

NBC7 San Diego – San Diego Health Officials Highlight Increase in Fentanyl-Related Overdose Deaths

JAMA Surgery – Guidelines for Opioid Prescribing in Children and Adolescents After Surgery: An Expert Panel Opinion

JAMA Surgery – Children Are Not Little Adults When Prescribing Opioids

JAMA Psychiatry – Prescription Opioid Use and Risk for Major Depressive Disorder and Anxiety and Stress-Related Disorder: A Multivariable Mendelian Randomization Analysis

JAMA Psychiatry – Five Things to Know When a Psychiatric Patient is Prescribed Opioids for Pain

Pennsylvania Pressroom – Gov. Wolf Signs 12th Renewal Of Opioid Disaster Declaration As Work Continues To Fight Opioid Epidemic And COVID-19 Pandemic

White House Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator – Administration Issues Joint Strategic Plan on Intellectual Property (Link)

National Academies – Caring for People with Mental Health and Substance Use Disorders in Primary Care Settings (Proceedings of a Workshop, 2020)

Department of Justice – Indivior Solutions Sentenced to Pay $289 Million in Criminal Penalties for Unlawful Marketing of Opioid Drug

U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Oklahoma – Tulsa Doctor Sentenced for Role in an Opioid Drug Conspiracy

U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Iowa – Eastern Iowa Podiatrist Sentenced in Opioid Diversion Scheme

U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Tennessee – Hendersonville Emergency Medical Doctor Sentenced To Prison For Unlawfully Distributing Controlled Substances

This Week’s Calendar

While Congress returns to session following the 2020 Presidential Election, there are no hearings or related events on the calendar for this week. We have, however, included several virtual events that may be of interest to Policy Report recipients. In the instance that there are any changes to the schedule for this week, we will make additional information available.

  • U.S. Food and Drug Administration Scientific Conference
    CBD and Other Cannabinoids: Sex and Gender Differences in Use and Responses
    Thursday, November 19th, 9:00am – 4:00pm; Register Here

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