Tuesday, November 30

Congresswoman Spartz introduces IMPACT Act

Last week, U.S. Representatives Victoria Spartz (IN-05), Madeleine Dean (PA-04), Mary Gay Scanlon (PA-05) and Brian Fitzpatrick (PA-01) introduced the Improving Access to Care and Treatment (IMPACT) Act. The legislation would simply increase the amount of time a physician may hold long-acting injectable (LAI) buprenorphine if ordered through a specialty pharmacy from 14 days to 60 days.

Under current law, a healthcare provider who orders LAI buprenorphine – a form of medication for opioid use disorder – from a specialty pharmacy may only hold the drug in their facility for 14 days. However, due to the logistical hurdles associated with specialty pharmacy delivery, the 14-day time limit is a barrier to healthcare providers utilizing LAI buprenorphine. This legislation makes a commonsense change to the law that was envisioned in the SUPPORT Act by allowing health care providers to hold the drug in their facility for up to 60 days. Thus, the bill helps to facilitate continuity of care and treatment of people with Opioid Use Disorder.

This bill ensures health care providers have a larger window to use the medications they are prescribing, and in turn it reduces an unnecessary barrier to this innovative treatment method. Given the magnitude of the opioid epidemic, we need to do everything we can to increase access to all treatments.

“The opioid epidemic has reached historic levels and is a national crisis affecting social and economic welfare of our country and our people,” said Rep. Spartz. “The IMPACT Act is important commonsense legislation which will bring much-needed treatments to more Americans and save lives.”

“Our substance use epidemic continues to grow and get worse – we need innovative treatment methods to better combat substance use disorder,” said Rep. Dean. “The IMPACT Act will reduce barriers to treatment, ensuring healthcare providers have the full access to proven medications, in turn helping patients get access to a potentially life-saving treatment.”

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