After passing with a 98-1 vote in the Senate and 393-8 vote in the House, President Trump has signed H.R. 6 – the SUPPORT for Patient and Communities Act, a 250 page bill containing hundreds of initiatives that aim to address the opioid epidemic.
Among the many, many initiatives the bill proposes are:
- More public FDA meetings and guidance documents to address challenges and barriers to the development of non-addictive pain medications
- The development of evidence-based opioid analgesic prescribing guidelines for the indication-specific treatment of acute pain
- Expanding access to medication-assisted therapy for the treatment of opioid use disorder by allowing more practitioners to prescribe drugs that treat opioid use disorder, and allowing those practitioners to treat more patients
- Giving pharmacists tools to better recognize when to decline to fill certain prescriptions
- Studies from the Department of Health and Human Services to measure the effectiveness of abuse-deterrent opioid formulations in preventing opioid abuse and misuse
- Guidance documents from the Department of Health and Human Services regarding non-opioid treatment and management of pain, including evidence-based, non-opioid pharmacological therapies and non-pharmacological therapies
- Initiatives to reduce opioid use in hospitals and emergency departments
- Public health awareness and training
For more detailed information, the bill can be read in full online.