Congress may have found one last chance to put real muscle behind the push to slow the opioid crisis, sources close to ongoing negotiations tell The Huffington Post.
In late July, President Barack Obama signed into law the first bipartisan bill addressing the epidemic that has taken root across the U.S. While the legislation opened the door for expanding and, most importantly, improving treatment, it fell far short of the nearly $1 billion the administration had proposed to address the crisis. In fact, the bill included essentially no new funding. In a statement on the bill signing, Obama made it clear this wasn’t a moment to celebrate.
“I am deeply disappointed that Republicans failed to provide any real resources for those seeking addiction treatment to get the care that they need,” Obama said. “In fact, they blocked efforts by Democrats to include $920 million in treatment funding.”
Now key senators are eyeing another bipartisan bill, the 21st Century Cures Act, as an opportunity to fund a response to the epidemic.
The legislation would give a huge monetary boost to the National Institutes of Health and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. If they can fund research to find cures for cancer and other diseases, the thinking goes, why can’t there be money to address the disease of opioid-use disorder?
Source: HuffingtonPost.com – November 17, 2016