Foster supports bills aimed at addressing heroin addiction
U.S. Rep. Bill Foster (D-IL) joined fellow Reps. Donna Edwards (D-MD), Elizabeth Esty (D-CT) and Sean Patrick Maloney (D-NY) in reintroducing the Opioid Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act, and the Expanding Opportunities for Recovery Act last week.
Both pieces of legislation are meant to combat heroin abuse.
"Heroin addiction is devastating our communities," Foster said. "We cannot let the number of lives lost continue to grow. It’s time to take action to reverse this epidemic. Countless community groups, municipalities and law enforcement officials are working to combat heroin abuse at the local level, but we must do more to support them. That’s why I’m reintroducing this legislation to increase prevention efforts and expand resources for those in recovery."
The Opiod Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act would create a program to analyze prescribing behavior and share information about improper prescribing with the state health profession board. It also would encourage states to implement drug take-back programs for unused prescription medications and equip doctors with more resources to help identify potential drug abuse patients. Finally, it would increase access to non-addictive, lifesaving drugs such as Naloxone, which reverses the effects of narcotics.
The Expanding Opportunities for Recovery Act would remove barriers to addiction treatment by providing grants for residential/in-patient opioid addiction treatment for qualified individuals.
“Many families do not know where to turn, and effective inpatient treatment is often out of reach," Esty said. "Part of the comprehensive solution to addressing opioid abuse needs to be expanding access to treatment. This bill takes an important step forward in improving access to the treatment individuals suffering from addiction need to begin their path to recovery."