PRESS RELEASE: Congresswoman Tenney’s Bill the Expanding Oversight of Opioid Prescribing and Payment

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From United States Representative Claudia Tenney:

For Immediate Release

June 19, 2018

Congresswoman Tenney’s Bill the Expanding Oversight of Opioid Prescribing and Payment Act Passes the House


Washington, DC— Today, Congresswoman Claudia Tenney (NY-22) announced her bill, H.R.  5723,  the Expanding Oversight of Opioid Prescribing and Payment Act of 2018was passed unanimously in the U.S. House of Representatives. This bipartisan legislation requires the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) to evaluate and report on adverse incentives that lead to the over-prescription of opioids and underutilization of non-opioid alternatives for post-surgery recovery and the treatment of chronic pain. This legislation comes after the House Ways and Means Committee solicited information and ideas to help combat the opioid epidemic. In a report, the Committee noted that many commenters believe that current Medicare policies create unnecessary barriers to the adoption of non-opioid pain treatments.

“In the 22nd district, we lost 114 loved ones to the opioid scourge last year alone—shockingly, this number is nearly 10 percent of the total opioid deaths statewide. Often, an addiction to opioids begins with a prescription for pain management.  It’s estimated that up to 29 percent of patients who are prescribed opioids for chronic pain misuse the drug,” said Congresswoman Claudia Tenney, a member of the Bipartisan Heroin Task Force. “Medicare and other insurance providers often do not cover non-opioid alternatives for pain and my bipartisan, common-sense legislation seeks to understand why this is the case. It recognizes barriers that have inhibited the use of non-opioid alternatives and identifies current practices preventing the use of non-opioid treatments for pain management while determining incentives that have unintentionally led to the over-prescription of opioids. I will continue to work to ensure we bring forth meaningful solutions that will end this epidemic and make our families and communities whole again.”

From Majority Leader McCarthy: “Combating America’s deadliest drug crisis will take everything we have. This bill creates critical oversight and increases access to necessary data for the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission to better serve those most in need. Claudia’s work will allow us to continue our fight against the opioid crisis well into the future.”

View Rep. Tenney’s remarks here.

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