This picks up the work started last Congress under then-Chairman Greg Walden (R-OR) into the practice of intermediaries profiting from recruiting patients for treatment. Now Energy and Commerce Republican Leader Walden, Subcommittee on Health Republican Leader Dr. Michael Burgess (R-TX), and Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations Republican Leader Brett Guthrie (R-KY) are leading this effort. This comes almost at the one-year anniversary of the SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act. The SUPPORT Act continues to advance treatment and recovery efforts for patients suffering from substance use disorders.
Here’s what they are saying:
POLITICO Pro Afternoon Pulse: HOUSE E&C REPUBLICANS WANT INFORMATION ON TREATMENT INDUSTRY
The GOP lawmakers on the Energy and Commerce Committee are probing the quality of care facilities provide and common business practices in the booming sector. The request for information from the public is a continuation of an investigation that’s already taken up the practice of patient brokering — in which a third party is paid to bring a patient to an establishment — and other areas of fraud and abuse. Responses are being directed to TreatmentRFI@mail.house.gov with a deadline of Nov 1.
The Oversight and Investigation subcommittee started an investigation into patient brokering and fraud in opioid use disorder treatment facilities last Congress.
“The SUPPORT Act was not our first effort to combat the opioid crisis, and it certainly will not be our last. We must continue to fight the spread of addiction in our communities, and that is exactly what we are doing with this request for information today. This fight is not over; we will not let up,” said Guthrie, Walden, and Burgess.
The SUPPORT Act included Congressman Guthrie’s Comprehensive Opioid Recovery Centers Act to establish treatment facilities that offer all FDA-approved treatments for opioid use disorder as well as full treatment services.
Committee Republicans called for a continuation of bipartisan work to combat the opioid crisis in February, and pressed the administration for an update on SUPPORT Act implementation in August.