White House 2019 Budget Proposal Targets Opioid Epidemic

In its budget proposal for 2019, the Trump administration has requested approximately $17 billion dollars to address the opioid epidemic. In general, the proposal allocates funding for new opioid-related resources for the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), expands Medicaid reimbursement to include medication-assisted treatment, and offers assistance to the states to improve their prescription drug management programs (PDMPs). It also provides for new discretionary resources for the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA; part of the DOJ), which the White House wants to take the lead in drug-related law enforcement efforts.

Here are some ways the budget proposes funding to address the epidemic:

  • $50 million for a media campaign
  • $625 million for states’ responses
  • $50 million to improve first responder access to overdose-reversal drugs
  • $100 million for surveillance and opioid abuse prevention activities, including PDMPs
  • $20 million for drug courts
  • $10 million for treatment programs for pregnant and postpartum women
  • $65 million to support high-risk rural communities to improve access to care and expand treatment and recovery services
  • $45 million for supplemental grants for opioid abuse prevention, treatment, and recovery services in American Indian and Alaska Native communities
  • $25 million to evaluate the impact of medication-assisted treatment on reducing overdose deaths
  • $100 million for the National Institutes of Health to support a public-private partnership with the pharmaceutical industry to develop prevention and treatments
  • $123 million for the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration for opioid abuse prevention, treatment, recovery support, and overdose reversal
  • $126 million for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to support opioid abuse prevention and surveillance activities
  • $103 million for the Department of Justice (DOJ) to support opioid-related state and local assistance efforts
  • Expand Medicaid coverage of comprehensive and evidence-based medication-assisted treatment (MAT)
  • Test and expand nationwide a Medicare-bundled payment for community-based MAT, including reimbursement for methadone
  • $253 million for Customs and Border Protection’s National Targeting Center to improve detection of illicit goods, including drugs

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