Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee Considers Kuster Legislation to Prevent Overdose Deaths
Washington, April 14, 2021
Washington, D.C. — Today, Rep. Annie Kuster (NH-02), founder and co-chair of the Bipartisan Addiction and Mental Health Task Force, participated in an Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee hearing entitled, “An Epidemic within a Pandemic: Understanding Substance Use and Misuse in America." The subcommittee heard from Regina M. LaBelle, Acting Director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), and health experts about the ongoing substance use epidemic. During the hearing, the subcommittee considered Kuster’s legislation H.R. 2366, the Support, Treatment, and Overdose Prevention of Fentanyl Act of 2021, to respond to the proliferation of synthetic opioids and provide a long-term solution to the constantly evolving addiction epidemic.
“To end the addiction crisis, we must utilize evidence-based approaches that prioritize prevention, support, and treatment for those struggling with substance use disorder,” said Rep. Kuster. “I’ve been pleased to see the Biden-Harris administration adopt this approach and emphasize the importance of addressing this crisis. The opioid epidemic is deeply personal to me: In 2019, New Hampshire ranked third for the most overdoses per 100,000 people.”
“We must do more to address the new realities of this epidemic defined by illicit synthetic opioids, as well as ensure our policies don’t reinforce the mistakes of our past that disproportionately impact communities of color,” Rep. Kuster continued. “That’s why I introduced my legislation, the STOP Fentanyl Act, to expand the public health approach to fentanyl overdoses. It is my hope that this administration will commit to working with myself and my colleagues to advance comprehensive solutions like those outlined in my legislation so we can turn the tide on this epidemic.”
Kuster’s STOP Fentanyl Act would:
Founder and co-chair of the Bipartisan Addiction and Mental Health Task Force, Rep. Kuster is a leader in Congress in the effort to end the opioid epidemic. This month, Kuster introduced comprehensive legislation to respond to the proliferation of synthetic opioids and provide a long-term solution to the constantly evolving addiction epidemic. Earlier this year, Kuster led 80 lawmakers in a letter to congressional leadership urging the inclusion of $10 billion in funding for mental health disorder and substance use disorder prevention and treatment.