Thompson Supported Legislation to Fight Back Against Opioid and Heroin Epidemic Passes House

May 13, 2016

On the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives this week, U.S. Rep. Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson (PA-5) voted in favor of more than a dozen bills intended to turn the tide against the nationwide epidemic of opioid and heroin addiction.  The package of bills constitutes the Comprehensive Addition and Recovery Act (S.524).  Thompson has been active in addressing the issue as a member of the Bipartisan Task Force to Combat the Heroin Epidemic. 

“The number of overdoses in Pennsylvania continues to grow at an alarming rate,” Thompson said. “By passing 18 bills this week to combat the national opioid epidemic, we continue to take meaningful steps to free individuals and families across our nation from addiction,” added Thompson.

On Thursday, May 12th, Thompson and members of the Pennsylvania Congressional Delegation met with Pennsylvania’s Secretary of Human Services, Ted Dallas. The meeting provided an update on Pennsylvania’s efforts to combat the opioid and heroin epidemic.

“I had an informative meeting with Secretary Dallas this week, which provided insights on how the commonwealth is attempting to address this crisis. I believe there is opportunities for collaboration between the state and federal government, to put fourth common sense solutions for prevention and treatment of those who are suffering from addiction. Pennsylvania does not have a community that has been isolated from the opioid and heroin epidemic, and we must not stop here,” said Thompson.

Among the bills included in this legislation are:

  • The Comprehensive Opioid Abuse Reduction Act (H.R. 5046):  This legislation will make grant funding available to state and local governments for the creation of opioid reduction programs.  These grant funds can be used for a variety of anti-opioid programs, including treatment programs, veteran treatment programs and juvenile opioid abuse programs.  They can also be used to train first responders in using opioid overdose reversal drugs.
  • H.R. 4641:  This bill creates a task force to review, modify and update the prescribing practices of physicians in dealing with pain management, with the goal of stopping addiction before it starts.
  • The Improving Safe Care for the Prevention of Infant Abuse and Neglect Act (H.R. 4843):  This measure, co-sponsored by Thompson, would make sure states which receive federal funds for the treatment of opioid-dependent babies comply with federal law in caring for them.