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Latta-authored INFO Act Included in Nearly 50 Bills Passed by the U.S. House to Combat the Opioid Epidemic

Over the past two weeks, the U.S. House of Representatives has passed nearly 50 bipartisan bills combating the opioid crisis. Included in the package of bills was the INFO Act, authored by Congressman Bob Latta (R-Bowling Green), which would improve access to data and grant information for advocates, state and local governments, law enforcement, pharmacists, and health care providers. H.R. 6, legislation that packaged together many of the bills, including the INFO Act, passed the House today by a vote of 396-14.

“The opioid epidemic has been devastating for communities across Ohio,” said Latta. “As someone who has heard constantly from constituents and families affected by this crisis, I’ve been working as a member of the Energy and Commerce Committee to find solutions with my colleagues, author and cosponsor bills, and move legislation. The effort over the past two weeks in the House is the most robust effort to date to reverse the rising trends of addiction, abuse, and overdoses. These bills attack the issue from every front by promoting alternate pain-management methods, providing greater access to treatment, and cracking down on the importation of fentanyl. We can’t rest until we’ve stopped this epidemic that is claiming tens of thousands of lives across our country.”

House Energy and Commerce Chairman Greg Walden (R-OR) has repeatedly highlighted Congressman Latta’s legislation and efforts on this issue. In a statement in favor of the INFO Act on the House floor, Walden said, “I really want to thank my colleague from Ohio, Mr. Latta, for leading this important initiative. I think all of us in our districts have heard directly from people going ‘I don’t know what resources are available at the Federal level, I don’t know where to access it, can’t you do something?’ And that’s where Mr. Latta, who chairs our subcommittee on Digital Commerce and Consumer Protection, rose to the challenge and put together this piece of legislation.”

For more information on the bills passed over the last two weeks, click here

H.R. 5774 - Combatting Opioid Abuse for Care in Hospitals (COACH) Act- Requires the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services to publish guidance for hospitals on pain management and opioid-use disorder prevention strategies.

H.R. 5773 - Preventing Addiction for Susceptible Seniors (PASS) Act- Requires Medicare prescription drug plans to establish drug management programs for at-risk beneficiaries, require electronic prior authorization for covered part D drugs, and to provide for other program integrity measures under parts C and D of the Medicare program.

H.R. 5776 - Medicare and Opioid Safe Treatment (MOST) Act- Increases treatment coverage in Medicare for individuals suffering from opioid use disorder.

H.R. 5769 - Expanding Access to Treatment (EAT) Act- Expands access under the Medicare program to addiction treatment in Federally qualified health centers and rural health clinics.

H.R. 5009 - Jessie’s Law- Ensures medical professionals have access to a consenting patient’s complete health information when making treatment decisions.

H.R. 5587 - Peer Support Communities of Recovery Act- Awards grants to nonprofits that focus on substance use disorder to establish regional technical assistance centers to provide assistance regarding implementation of peer-delivered addiction recovery support services, establishment of recovery community organizations and centers, and overdose reversal medication.

Latta introduced the INFO Act after hearing from constituents at opioid forums he held in Findlay and Defiance. He recently shared how that bill came about in a video released by the House Energy and Commerce Committee. That video is available here.



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