Shaheen Responds to Funding Levels for Opioid Crisis in Labor, HHS Appropriations Bill
**Bill Includes Increases for Shaheen-Championed Programs That Provide Treatment, Prevention for Opioid Addiction**
**Shaheen Renews Her Call for Congress to Pass Emergency Funding to Address Opioid Crisis**
(Washington D.C.) – Today, U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), member of the Senate Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations Subcommittee, released the following statement in reaction to the fiscal year 2017 Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education, and Related Agencies Appropriations bill that was passed by the subcommittee today. The bill provides increases for several Shaheen-led programs, and includes investments in the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and prescription drug abuse prevention and treatment through initiatives of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).
“I am glad to see that this bill reflects my repeated calls for increases in funding to address the wave of opioid addiction that is ravaging America’s families, however it’s not nearly enough to stem the tide of this crisis,” said Senator Shaheen. “First responders and treatment providers in New Hampshire and across the country, are desperate for additional resources. We have to treat this epidemic like the national public health emergency that it is, which is why I will continue to urge Congress to pass my emergency funding legislation. Congress needs to quickly step-up its efforts and help those suffering from addiction get the help they desperately need.”
Specifically, the FY2017 Labor, HHS Appropriations bill will provide $98 million to CDC, $28 million more than FY16, for preventing prescription drug overdoses. These funds would allow for broad dissemination of CDC’s opioid prescribing guidelines, as well as improving State Prescription Drug Monitoring programs. The bill also provides increased funding for SAMHSA, including $60 million for grants for states to expand access to drug treatment services for those with a dependence on prescription opioids or heroin. This is $35 million more than FY2016. The bill also includes $26 million, $14 million more than FY2016, to treat opioid overdoses. These funds will be used to help states purchase emergency devices that rapidly reverse the adverse effects of opioid overdoses, and also to train first responders on how to use the emergency devices and increase public awareness of the dangers of opioid use.
Shaheen is leading the effort in Congress to pass emergency supplemental funding for those on the frontlines of the opioid addiction crisis. Her legislation would provide supplemental appropriations totaling $600 million to programs at the Department of Justice and the Department of Health and Human Services.