Rep. Tim Ryan introduces bill to fight prescription drug, opioid abuse


Staff report

YOUNGSTOWN

U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan introduced a bipartisan Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act 2.0 to authorize about $800 million in new funding to fight prescription drug and opioid abuse.

The bill would also increase criminal penalties on manufacturers that don’t report suspicious orders or keep proper diversion protocols in place and provide first-responder training and fund the expansion of specialized courts to treat veterans.

“I understand the damage the opioid epidemic causes in neighborhoods in every ZIP code each and every day,” said Ryan of Howland, D-13th.

“In my state of Ohio, fatal drug overdoses have been the leading cause of accidental death since 2007. Heroin and opiate addiction is destroying lives, disrupting families and destabilizing communities. It is imperative that we work to stem this tide.”

Ryan is co-sponsoring the bill in the House with Reps. Marsha Blackburn, a Republican from Tennessee; Ann Kuster, a Democrat from New Hampshire; and Tom MacArthur, a Republican from New Hampshire.

The bill would provide:

$300 million to expand first-responder training and access to naloxone.

$300 million to expand evidence-based medication-assisted treatment.

$100 million to expand treatment for pregnant and postpartum women, including facilities that allow children to reside with their mothers.

$60 million to help states develop a plan to assist states, hospitals and social services to report, track and assist newborns exposed to substances and their families.

$20 million to expand veterans treatment courts.

$10 million to fund a national education campaign on the dangers of prescription opioid misuse, heroin and fentanyl.

$10 million for an initiative to develop, support and maintain youth recovery support services.

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