Thursday, May 17, 2018

May 16, 2018
Call Your U.S. Representative Today to Oppose the Overdose Prevention and Patient Safety Act (H.R. 5795)
As an advocate for addiction professionals and their clients, NAADAC opposes the Overdose Prevention and Patient Safety Act (H.R. 5795) and believes the bill would have unintended consequences for individuals with substance use disorders (SUDs) who could be subject to discrimination and legal consequences in the event that their information is improperly used or discussed.  H.R. 5795 is scheduled for consideration by the House Energy and Commerce Committee on Thursday, May 17, as part of the Committee's continuing efforts to advance a large package of opioid response bills. Your voice is critical to stopping this misguided policy change. Call your U.S. Representative TODAY to oppose H.R. 5795.
Why? Here's why recovery organizations, patient advocacy groups, and health policy organizations strongly oppose H.R. 5795:
  • The bill is harmful: It would eliminate the SUD patient's current legal ability to consent to disclose his/her SUD treatment information for "treatment, payment, and health care operations" purposes, allowing such information to be disclosed and re-disclosed to health plans, health care providers, and other entities without the patient's knowledge and consent;
  • The bill could discourage people from getting SUD treatment: Since the bill's proposed anti-discrimination provisions will not be sufficient to protect people currently using illegal substances from discrimination or protect their patient records from being subpoenaed or seized and used to prosecute them, people might be afraid to get the treatment they need; and
  • The bill is unnecessary: Current federal confidentiality law, 42 U.S.C. §290dd-2 and its recently updated regulations at 42 C.F.R. Part 2, support care coordination among providers in electronic health systems and current health delivery models, while maintaining patient confidentiality. 
Call Your U.S. Representative TODAY: Please call the U.S. Capitol directly at 202.224.3121 to be connected to your U.S. Representative to urge him/her to oppose H.R. 5795.  Click here to find your U.S. Representative.
  • What You Need to Say: "As an addiction professional and constituent who lives in the Representative's district, I would like the Representative to oppose the Overdose Prevention and Safety Act, H.R. 5795 during this week's Energy and Commerce Committee markup.  This bill would reduce fundamental protections for people receiving addiction treatment by allowing the sharing of patient health information to a wide range of entities without their consent.  In the middle of our nation's opioid crisis, H.R. 5795 would prevent people from entering care out of fear that their treatment records could be used against them in harmful and discriminatory ways."

Thank you for your dedication to support those in need of addiction and mental health prevention, intervention, treatment, and recovery support!

NAADACThe Association for Addiction Professionals
44 Canal Center Plaza, Suite 301Alexandria, VA 22314
Phone: 703.741.7686 / 800.548.0497

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