Vermont nurse practitioners
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Vermont Nurse Practitioners Association

Suboxone Bill: Please Email Welch, Sanders, and Leahy!

Posted over 2 years ago by Amy O'Meara

H.R.2536 aims to improve the ability of our country's health care providers to treat opiate addicted patients with the safe and effective drug buprenorphine. I do not need to repeat the bill's excellent justifications that are discussed within the bill, but want to emphasize that this bill allows Nurse Practitioners (NPs) and Physician's Assistants (PAs) to prescribe buprenorphine. This portion alone will significantly increase the number of people who will be treated with buprenorphine, thereby reducing opiate addictions throughout the United States.

It is critical that NPs and PAs are permitted to prescribe buprenorphine to reduce the number of Americans addicted to opiates, such as heroine and illegal prescription opioids.

Summary: H.R.2536 — 114th Congress (2015-2016)All Bill Information (Except Text)

There is one summary for H.R.2536. Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Introduced in House (05/21/2015)

Recovery Enhancement for Addiction Treatment Act or the TREAT Act

Amends 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.

Allows a qualifying physician, after one year, to request approval to treat an unlimited number of patients under specified conditions, including that he or she: (1) agrees to fully participate in the Prescription Drug Monitoring Program of the state in which the practitioner is licensed, (2) practices in a qualified practice setting, and (3) has completed at least 24 hours of training regarding treatment and management of opiate-dependent patients for substance use disorders provided by specified organizations.

Revises the definition of a "qualifying practitioner" to include: (1) a physician who holds a board certification from the American Board of Addiction Medicine; and (2) a nurse practitioner or physicians assistant who is licensed under state law to prescribe schedule III, IV, or V medications for pain, who has specified training or experience that demonstrates specialization in the ability to treat opiate-dependent patients, who practices under the supervision of, or prescribes opioid addiction therapy in collaboration with, a licensed physician who holds an active waiver to prescribe schedule III, IV, or V narcotic medications for opioid addiction therapy, and who practices in a qualified practice setting.

Directs the Comptroller General to initiate an evaluation of the effectiveness of this Act, including an evaluation of: (1) changes in the availability and use of medication-assisted treatment for opioid addiction, (2) the quality of medication-assisted treatment programs, (3) diversion of opioid addiction treatment medication, and (4) changes in state or local policies and legislation relating to opioid addiction treatment.


Amy O'Meara over 2 years ago

There is a parallel bill in the Senate At the moment, these are only both referred to committee, so letters should target the specific committees to encourage them to bring it up for debate.

Deborah Wachtel over 2 years ago

Committee Holds Hearing on Opioid Abuse
On Thursday, October 8, the Committee on Energy & Commerce Subcommittee on Health held a hearing entitled Examining Legislative Proposals to Combat our Nation's Drug Abuse Crisis. Members of the committee and representatives from Health and Human Services (HHS), the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and National Drug Control Policy discussed legislative proposals to help prevent opioid drug abuse and expand access to treatment for those patients combating opioid drug abuse. During the hearing, the Recovery Enhancement for Addiction Treatment Act “TREAT Act” (H.R. 2536/S. 1455) was discussed, which would give nurse practitioners the authority to provide life-saving medication-assisted therapies such as buprenorphine (Suboxone) for patients battling heroin and other opioid addiction. As the committee continues to focus on this topic, with a hearing scheduled to take place on October 20, we ask that you contact your Members of Congress to ensure they understand the critical importance of NPs' patients having access to medication-assisted therapies when battling opioid abuse.

Kim Ladue over 2 years ago

Thanks for the update and reminder.

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