ACAP Statement on Passage of Senate Opioid Bill
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 18, 2018
FOR MORE INFORMATION: Jeff Van Ness, (202) 204-7515; firstname.lastname@example.org
WASHINGTON—Margaret A. Murray, Chief Executive Officer of the Association for Community Affiliated Plans (ACAP), today made the following statement upon the passage of a comprehensive opioid bill in the U.S. Senate:
“The opioid crisis doesn’t discriminate by party label. We applaud the bipartisan efforts of Congress to address opioid abuse, and the packages passed by the House and Senate provide health plans and others new tools and resources to do so.
“We particularly appreciate that both the House and Senate have extended the reporting provisions of the Bipartisan Budget Act for core quality measures from pediatric care to care for adults as well. This extends stakeholder insight into the quality of care delivered to the entirety of the Medicaid program—not just Medicaid managed care, which has systematically reported on quality for years. This provision doesn’t just improve care for opioid use disorder – it’s an important step toward improving care in Medicaid across the board.
“However, it bears noting that the Senate package passed last night does not address the barriers to care for patients with opioid or other substance use disorders at 42 CFR Part 2. While ACAP plans support strong patient privacy protections, the regulations at 42 CFR Part 2 impede care coordination and team-based care for opioids. These regulations lead to a more fragmented system of care with far less coordination across providers. The ultimate result is poorer quality of care and higher costs.
“We call on Congress to adopt the language in the House package that came from the Overdose Prevention and Patient Safety (OPPS) Act, which would harmonize substance use disorder privacy regulations with the protections contained in HIPAA.”
ACAP represents 62 Safety Net Health Plans, which provide health coverage to more than 21 million people in 29 states. Safety Net Health Plans serve their members through Medicaid, Medicare, the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), the Marketplace and other health programs. For more information, visit www.communityplans.net.
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