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Referred to Comm by Council
City Council
Introduced by Council

Res. No. 72

 

Resolution calling upon the United States Congress to reintroduce and pass the Recovery Enhancement for Addiction Treatment Act, which would expand treatment for opioid addiction.

 

By Council Members Levin, Brannan and Salamanca

 

Whereas, Opioid drugs include prescription medication such as oxycodone, morphine and codeine, as well as the illicit drug heroin; and

Whereas, According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), drug overdoses have been increasing dramatically since 1980 and surpassed motor vehicle death rates by 2009; and

Whereas, In 2016, more than 46 people died every day from overdoses involving prescription opioids, according to the CDC; and

Whereas, Between 2010 and 2016, the rate of heroin-related overdose deaths increased by a factor of 5; and

Whereas, According to the CDC, over 1,000 people are treated in emergency departments for misusing prescription opioids every day, and emergency department visits, substance treatment admissions and economic costs associated with opioid abuse have all increased in recent years; and

Whereas, Expanding access to addiction-treatment services is an essential component of a comprehensive response; and

Whereas, Medication-assisted treatment (MAT) combines behavioral therapy and medications to treat substance use disorders and the three types of medication for treating patients with opioid addiction are methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone; and

Whereas, While MAT has proved effective in helping patients recover and reducing the risk of overdose, these medications are markedly underutilized; and

Whereas, According to a May 29, 2014 article in the New England Journal of Medicine, of the 2.5 million Americans 12 years of age or older who abused or were dependent on opioids in 2012, fewer than 1 million received MAT; and

Whereas, This article further states that MAT has been adopted in less than half of private-sector treatment programs, and within those programs, only 34 percent of patients receive them; and

Whereas, The Recovery Enhancement for Addiction Treatment Act (S.1455/H.R.2536, TREAT Act) was introduced in 2015 by Senator Edward J. Markey [D-MA] and Representative Brian Higgins [D-NY]; and

Whereas, The TREAT Act would amend the Controlled Substances Act to increase the number of patients that a qualifying practitioner dispensing narcotic drugs for maintenance or detoxification treatment is initially allowed to treat from 30 to 100 patients per year; and

Whereas, The TREAT Act would allow a qualifying physician who has received 24 hours of training specifically related to treating opiate-dependent patients to request approval to treat up to 500 patients under specified conditions after one year; and

Whereas, The legislation would expand the definition of “qualifying practitioner” to include nurse practitioners or physicians assistants and specify that all qualifying practitioners must participate in the Prescription Drug Monitoring Program of the state in which the practitioner is licensed; and

Whereas, The TREAT Act would direct the Comptroller General to initiate an evaluation of the effectiveness of the Act, including changes in the availability and use of MAT for opioid addiction and the quality of MAT programs; and

Whereas, This legislation would expand the ability of trained medical professionals to provide life-saving medication-assisted therapies for patients suffering from opioid addictions; and

Whereas, The 2015-16 federal legislative session ended without passage of the TREAT Act; now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That the Council of the City of New York calls upon the United States Congress to reintroduce and pass the Recovery Enhancement for Addiction Treatment Act, which would expand treatment for opioid addiction.

 

CP

LS 1731

1/10/18