President Donald Trump (R) signed legislation that is aimed to both help people overcome addictions and prevent addictions before they start last week.
The opioid legislation received overwhelming bipartisan in both of the chambers.
“Together we are going to end the scourge of drug addiction in America,” Trump said. “We are going to end it, or we are going to at least make an extremely big dent in this terrible, terrible problem.”
The Substance Use-Disorder Prevention that Promotes Opioid Recovery and Treatment (SUPPORT) for Patients and Communities Act included language from the STOP Act, Improving CARE Act, CRIB Act, and initiatives from the CARA 2.0 Act, all introduced by U.S. Senator Rob Portman (R-OH).
“Today’s bill signing is a major victory … and it marks a significant step forward in our efforts to turn the tide of addiction,” Portman said. “Importantly, this bill will increase access to long-term treatment and recovery while also helping stop the flow of deadly synthetic drugs like fentanyl from being shipped into the United States through our own Postal Service.”
The SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act will reduce the supply of cheap and deadly synthetic drugs; increase access to treatment and recovery; help babies who are born dependent on drugs; reauthorize key federal anti-drug initiatives; increase access to high quality recovery housing; implement a national youth recovery initiative; and more.
It will also attempt to address the over prescription of opioids and authorize government research into non-addictive pain-management drugs.
The state of Arizona has been at the forefront of helping end the opioid epidemic. In January, Governor Doug Ducey (R) signed the Arizona Opioid Epidemic Act into law, which also takes aggressive steps toward addressing opioid addiction, holding bad actors accountable, expanding access to treatment and providing life-saving resources to first responders, law enforcement and community partners.
In March, the Arizona Department of Health Services and the Poison and Drug Information Centers of Arizona joined forces to offer the country’s first 24/7 opioid helpline for Arizona residents and health care providers.
Lastly, there are also multiple entities in Arizona, including the city of Phoenix, Tucson Medical Center, and Cochise County, that have all joined in lawsuits to sue opioid manufacturers.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, every day more than 115 people in the United States die from opioid overdoses.