HAP Resource Center

Joint Advocacy Letter: Support for Opioid Workforce Act of 2019

June 26, 2019

The Honorable Richard Neal
Chairman
House Ways & Means Committee
U.S. House of Representatives
1102 Longworth House Office Building
Washington D.C. 20515

The Honorable Kevin Brady
Ranking Member
House Ways & Means Committee
U.S. House of Representatives
1139 Longworth House Office Building
Washington D.C. 20515

Dear Chairman Neal and Ranking Member Brady:

On behalf of the 80 organizations below, we write to express our support for the Opioid Workforce Act of 2019 (H.R. 3414). This thoughtful, bipartisan legislation would provide Medicare support for an additional 1,000 graduate medical education (GME) positions over five years in hospitals that have, or are in the process of establishing, accredited residency programs in addiction medicine, addiction psychiatry, or pain medicine. We greatly appreciate Congress’ commitment to advancing policies that would strengthen the health care workforce serving on the front lines of the nation’s opioid epidemic.

According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, in 2018 approximately 21 million people needed treatment for a substance use disorder, however only 11% of those received any treatment at all. Part of the reason for this disparity is a shortage of physicians trained in addiction medicine, addiction psychiatry, or pain medicine. The lack of physicians trained in these specialties reflects the nation’s larger physician shortages. Funding new, targeted residency positions will strengthen the health care workforce and help mitigate the effects of the overall physician shortage.

The Opioid Workforce Act of 2019 is a targeted and important step that Congress must take to help ensure a robust physician workforce that can deliver high-quality care to those suffering from substance use disorders.

We encourage all members of the Committee to support this bipartisan bill.

Sincerely,

A New PATH
Academic Consortium for Integrative Medicine and Health
AIDS United
Alabama Society of Addiction Medicine
Alaska Society of Addiction Medicine
Alliance for Academic Internal Medicine
American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry
American Academy of Pain Medicine
American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
American Association for Anatomy
American Association of Chairs of Departments of Psychiatry
American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine
American Association of Directors of Psychiatric Residency Training
American College of Academic Addiction Medicine
American College of Physicians American Medical Group Association
American Osteopathic Academy of Addiction Medicine
American Osteopathic Association
American Psychiatric Association
American Society for Clinical Pathology
American Society of Addiction Medicine
America's Essential Hospitals
Arizona Society of Addiction Medicine
Arkansas Society of Addiction Medicine
Association for Prevention Teaching and Research
Association of Academic Health Sciences Libraries
Association of Academic Physiatrists
Association of American Medical Colleges
Association of Chairs of Departments of Physiology
Association of Medical School Microbiology and Immunology Chairs
Association of University Professors of Neurology
Association of University Radiologists
California Hospital Association
California Society of Addiction Medicine
Catholic Health Association of the United States
Colorado Society of Addiction Medicine
Connecticut Society of Addiction Medicine
Federation of American Hospitals
Florida Society of Addiction Medicine
Greater New York Hospital Association
Hawaii Society of Addiction Medicine
Healthcare Association of New York State
Healthcare Leadership Council
Illinois Health and Hospital Association
Indiana Society of Addiction Medicine
Maryland-DC Society of Addiction Medicine
Massachusetts Health & Hospital Association
Massachusetts Society of Addiction Medicine
Medical Group Management Association
Michigan Society of Addiction Medicine
Midwest Society of Addiction Medicine (Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska)
Minnesota Society of Addiction Medicine
National Association for Behavioral Healthcare
National Council for Behavioral Health
Nevada Society of Addiction Medicine
New England Society of Addiction Medicine (Maine, Vermont, and New Hampshire)
New Jersey Society of Addiction Medicine
North Carolina Society of Addiction Medicine
Northwest Society of Addiction Medicine (Montana, Wyoming, and North Dakota)
Ohio Society of Addiction Medicine
Oklahoma Society of Addiction Medicine
Pennsylvania Society of Addiction Medicine
Physicians for Responsible Opioid Prescribing
Rhode Island Society of Addiction Medicine
Shatterproof
SMART Recovery
Society for Academic Continuing Medical Education
Society of Academic Associations of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine
Society of General Internal Medicine
South Carolina Society of Addiction Medicine
Student Coalition on Addiction
Student National Medicine Association
Texas Society of Addiction Medicine
The Hospital and  Healthsystem Association of Pennsylvania
The Kennedy Forum
Utah Society of Addiction Medicine
Virginia Society of Addiction Medicine
West Virginia Society of Addiction Medicine
Wisconsin Society of Addiction Medicine
Young People in Recovery

CC: Reps. Brad Schneider, Susan Brooks, Annie Kuster, and Elise Stefanik

 

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Topics: Federal Advocacy, Public Health, Substance Use Disorder

Revision Date: 6/26/2019

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