Administration’s FY 2023 Budget Request Would Boost Funding to Combat Opioid Crisis

Last week, President Joseph Biden unveiled his $5.8 trillion budget request for fiscal year 2023, which proposes $127.3 billion in discretionary and $1.7 trillion in mandatory budget authority for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), with $8.4 billion proposed for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). As is common for the preliminary budget proposal, this document includes only high-level details, but promises to support a variety of aspects of the response to the opioid crisis. These include $10.7 billion for Substance Use and Mental Health Services Administration, commitments to remove the word “abuse” from the agency names within HHS, and $38 million for FDA to support developing opioid overdose reversal treatments and opioid use disorder therapies, assessing feasibility to integrate opioid Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategies (REMS) prescriber education into electronic health records, expanding opioid screening at international mail facilities, and advancing digital health medical devices for opioid use disorder.

Articles & Resources

FY 2023 Budget

HHS – Statement by HHS Secretary Becerra on the President’s Fiscal Year 2023 Budget

Bloomberg Government – FDA Seeks $3.7B In Fiscal 2023 For IT Updates, Food Safety, Opioids

Lawmakers Introduce Bills to Increase OUD Treatment and Prevention, Address Student Athlete Opioid Addiction

Last week, lawmakers introduced several bills to address the opioid epidemic, including bills that increase access to opioid use disorder treatment, reauthorize substance use disorder programs, and address student athlete opioid addiction. On March 28th, Representatives Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5), Don Bacon (NE-2), Sharice Davids (KS-3), and Anthony Gonzalez (OH-16) introduced the Student Athlete Opioid Prevention Act. The bill would authorize the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) to create grants to fund education programs for students and student athletes and training programs for teachers, administrators, athletic trainers, coaches, and athletic directors on opioid misuse. The bill would also require that SAMHSA regularly evaluate grantees and develop a report on the effectiveness of the programs. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (NH) introduced companion legislation in the Senate.

On March 29th, Representatives Larry Bucshon (IN-8), Cindy Axne (IA-3), Mariannette Miller-Meeks, IA-2, and Chris Pappas (NH-1) introduced the Timely Treatment for Opioid Use Disorder Act. Under current criteria, patients with opioid use disorder are required to have been addicted at least one year before being admitted to an opioid treatment program. The bill would eliminate the waiting period to allow patients to receive treatment sooner. Also on March 29th, Representatives Kelly Armstrong (ND-AL), Abigail Spanberger (VA-7), María Elvira Salazar (FL-27), and Tom O’Halleran (AZ-1) introduced the Summer Barrow Prevention, Treatment, and Recovery Act. The bill would re-authorize substance use disorder treatment and prevention programs for $900 million. The reauthorization would include the Substance Use Disorder Programs of National Significance Grant Programs and programs focused on overdose prevention, first responder training, co-prescribing programs, substance use disorder treatment for pregnant and postpartum women, and opioid alternatives.

Articles & Resources

Summer Barrow Prevention, Treatment, and Recovery Act | Congressman Kelly Armstrong – Armstrong, Colleagues Introduce Legislation to Reauthorize Critical Substance Use Disorder Programs

Timely Treatment for Opioid Use Disorder Act | Representative Larry Bucshon – Reps. Bucshon, Axne, Miller-Meeks, and Pappas Introduce Bill to Increase Access to Opioid Use Disorder Treatment

Student and Student Athlete Opioid Misuse Prevention Act | Congressman Josh Gottheimer – Release: Gottheimer Introduces Bipartisan, Bicameral Bill to Combat Student Athlete Opioid Addiction. Creates Federal Youth Educational & Training Grant Program on Prevention

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.

Association of Health Care Journalists – New tip sheet explores substance use disorders in older adults

FDA – Law enforcement seizures of pills containing fentanyl increased dramatically between 2018-2021

FDA – Remarks by Patrizia Cavazzoni, M.D.: Naloxone Access Public Meeting

NAHB – NAHB and SAFE Project Offer Resources to Address Addiction

Science – Non-opioid pain pill shows promise in clinical trials

Senator Maggie Hassan – Senator Hassan Continues Push to Expand Access to Life-Saving Medication-Assisted Treatment for Substance Use Disorder

Senator Tuberville – Press Release: Tuberville Sounds Alarm on Deadly Fentanyl Crisis

The Hill – Fentanyl in pills drives spike in drug overdoses

This Week’s Calendar

In the week ahead, there are no relevant events or hearings noticed at this time. In the event that there are any changes to the schedule for this week, we will make additional information available.

  • House Committee on Energy and Commerce
    Hearing On “Communities In Need: Legislation To Support Mental Health And Well-Being”
    Tuesday, April 5th ; 10:15 a.m.; Hearing Notice

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