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Upton Champions Groundbreaking Opioids Package

Contains two bipartisan provisions authored by Upton, more funding for State grants, expected to be signed into law soon

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Washington, September 28, 2018 | Tom Wilbur (202-225-3761) | comments

U.S. Rep. Fred Upton, R-St. Joseph, today released the following statement after H.R. 6, the SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act, passed the U.S. House. H.R. 6 is a bipartisan, bicameral agreement and is expected to be signed into law soon. Upton recently held a bipartisan opioids listening session at the Western Michigan University Homer Stryker, M.D. School of Medicine. There, he heard from local stakeholders such as Jeff Patton, CEO of Kalamazoo County Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services, Kalamazoo County Sheriff Rick Fuller, and more.

“This is a major response to a major problem. As I’ve heard directly from our local leaders, it’s clear we need an effort that goes after those who overprescribe, improves local treatment and prevention efforts, gives our law enforcement better tools to get drugs out of our communities, cracks down on synthetic drugs and fentanyl, helps develop non-addictive pain medications, and more.

“This was the result of bipartisan collaboration. I’m pleased to see two specific provisions I helped lead are included. The opioid epidemic knows no bounds, we must continue working together to help those suffering.”

H.R. 6 includes two bipartisan provisions authored by Upton: H.R. 5002, the ACE Research Act, co-authored alongside U.S. Rep. Debbie Dingell, D-Michigan, and H.R. 5800, the Medicaid IMD ADDITIONAL INFO Act. It also includes a provision reauthorizing and improving state targeted response grants from Upton’s 21st Century Cures Act at $500 million per year for two years.

H.R.6 follows the passage of the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA) and the 21st Century Cures Act last Congress which allocated $32 billion to the State of Michigan, the $4 billion appropriated in the 2018 omnibus package, and the $6.7 billion included in the recent Defense-Labor-HHS appropriations package to boost programs that fight, treat, and stop substance abuse and support access to mental health services.

H.R. 6, the Substance Use-Disorder Prevention that Promotes Opioid Recovery and Treatment (SUPPORT) for Patients and Communities Act will help the overall efforts to advance treatment and recovery initiatives, improve prevention, protect our communities, and bolster efforts to fight deadly illicit synthetic drugs like fentanyl.

Here’s specifically how it will help combat the opioid crisis:

Treatment and Recovery

·         Improve and expand access to treatment and recovery services

·         Provide incentives for enhanced care, coordination, and innovation

·         Establish comprehensive opioid recovery centers


·         Encourage non-addictive opioid alternatives to treat pain

·         Improve data to identify and help at-risk patients and families

·         Address high prescribing rates while enhancing prescription drug monitoring programs

Protecting communities

·         Give law enforcement tools to get dangerous drugs out of our communities

·         Better intercept illicit opioids at international mail facilities

·         Improve access to federal resources for local communities

Fighting fentanyl

·         Better tackle ever-changing synthetic drugs

·         Crack down on foreign shipments of illicit drugs

·         Provide grants for local communities to combat fentanyl

Learn more about Upton’s work to combat the opioid crisis HERE.

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