US Senate in Key Opiate Bill, Legislation Awaits CA Gov Signature
09/20/2018 - ATIN- The U.S. Senate, in a bipartisan effort, has passed comprehensive legislation aimed at addressing the opiate crisis, providing almost $8B in a special funding appropriation for the legislation, a version of which was passed by the house in June. Final legislation that reconciles the two bills is expected shortly, ready for President Trump's signature next month.

Numerous senators have spoken out on the seriousness of the opiate epidemic, with the CDC estimating in the last several weeks that nearly 72K died of drug overdoses in the 12 months ending March 2017, up from 62K a year earlier.

The federal opiate addiction effort will focus to a large extent on law enforcement and "interdiction," focusing especially on intercepting dangerous supplies the ultra powerful synthetic opiate fentanyl.

Just $10M in funding will go to establishing "comprehensive" addiction treatment centers starting 2019. The federal legislation encourages medication-based therapies which often are not offered a treatment centers


There are three separate pieces of legislation sitting on the governor of California's desk. The legislation is particularly important  for  the treatment industry given that Southern California is a major treatment "hub," second only the South Florida, which recently passed significant legislation regulating the treatment and sober living industries in the state.

For example, patient broking, which is rampant in the treatment business, was made a felony last year in legislation that sailed through both houses in Florida.

Here are the bills awaiting the California governor's signature:

AB 3162, which would make rehab licenses provisional for one year and revocable for good cause.

SB 992, which would require centers to draft plans for what to do when residents relapse, as well as require that financial relationships between sober living homes and licensed treatment centers are publicly disclosed.

And SB 1228 which would forbid patient-brokering (no criminal penalties)

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