(GRANGER) - Today, U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly announced Indiana will receive a federal grant for approximately $10.9 million to help combat the opioid epidemic.
The grant awarded by the Department of Health and Human Services was funded through the bipartisan 21st Century Cures Act, which Donnelly pushed for and supported. The 21st Century Cures Act was signed into law in December 2016 and includes $1 billion over the next two years to help combat opioid abuse and heroin use. In late November, Donnelly and several colleagues called for the Senate to pass this necessary, emergency funding to address these public health crises before the end of the year.
Donnelly said, "After pushing for passage of the bipartisan 21st Century Cures Act, which is now law, I am pleased Indiana is receiving much-needed resources to help fund prevention efforts and treatment and recovery services. We are making progress to ensure our state and communities have the tools needed to confront this public health crisis, but we still have a lot of work to do. It is going to continue to take all of us working together to stem the tide of the opioid epidemic."
Over the past three-plus years, as Indiana has been devastated by opioid abuse and heroin use, Donnelly has actively fought for both new efforts to help with prevention, treatment, and recovery and the funding necessary to support those programs. Several of Donnelly's provisions were signed into law, and he successfully advocated and continues to advocate for funding that would expand prevention and treatment programs.
Background on Senator Donnelly's work to combat the opioid abuse and heroin use epidemics:
For more than two years, Donnelly has been working to address the opioid abuse and heroin use epidemics in Indiana and across the country. He has listened to Hoosiers, introduced bipartisan legislation, partnered with federal, state, and local officials, and brought together stakeholders.
After Donnelly introduced bipartisan legislation with Senator Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) in June 2014 that would take a multi-pronged approach to addressing these epidemics, including to update best practices for pain management and prescribing pain medication, Congresswoman Susan Brooks (IN-05) helped introduce similar legislation in the House.
Donnelly and Brooks have held two roundtables on the opioid abuse epidemic: the first in September 2015, with federal, state, and local public health officials, doctors, and pharmacists to discuss the role providers play in helping to address the opioid abuse problem; the second in April 2016, with Indiana University School of Medicine (IUSM) doctors, professors, faculty and medical residents, to learn more about IUSM's efforts to educate and train medical students, residents, and current physicians on best prescribing practices, pain management, substance abuse, and treating addiction.
In June 2016, Donnelly held a roundtable in Northwest Indiana focused on drug abuse prevention efforts with federal, state, and local officials to discuss federal and local partnerships and programs that are at work.
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