Washington—The SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act was signed into law today, a comprehensive bill to help address the opioid and drug overdose epidemic.
The bill includes a provision authored by Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), the Using Data to Prevent Opioid Diversion Act, which holds drug distributors and manufacturers accountable when they fail to identify, stop and report suspicious orders of opioids. In addition to Feinstein, the provision was cosponsored by Sens. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.).
“We know drug manufacturers and distributors are shipping more pills to pharmacies than they should, and we know that substance abuse prevention and treatment are essential parts of the solution to this crisis,” Feinstein said.
“That’s why I’m pleased the provisions I introduced and cosponsored are included in this bill. This law takes an all-of-the-above approach by establishing new drug prevention and treatment programs alongside tighter regulations to curtail the free flow of pills available for potential abuse. Overdose deaths continue to rise at unprecedented rates, and drug manufacturers and distributors must do more to help end the opioid crisis.”
Other provisions cosponsored by Senator Feinstein that are part of the SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act include:
1) Opioid Quota Reform Act, a bill to help ensure legitimate access to pain medications, while simultaneously authorizing the Drug Enforcement Administration to consider factors such as abuse and overdose deaths when setting annual production quotas for certain opioids, with Sens. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) and John Kennedy (R-La.).
2) Substance Abuse Prevention Act, a bill that establishes a number of new drug prevention and treatment programs and reauthorizes several others, including the Office of National Drug Control Policy and the Drug-Free Communities, the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas and drug court programs, with Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas).
3) Synthetic Abuse and Labeling of Toxic Substances Act, a bill that enables the Justice Department to consider additional evidence when determining if a controlled substance analogue is intended for human consumption, with Sens. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.).
4) Opioid Crisis Response Act, a bill that aims to spur research on non-additive medications to treat pain; expands access to substance abuse treatment, including medication assisted treatment; and authorizes a number of grant programs to address prevention and recovery, with Sens. Patty Murray (D-Wash.) and Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.).