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Neurosurgery Joins Other Groups to Urge Lawmakers to Include the Overdose Prevention and Patient Safety Act in the Final Opioid Agreement

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The Honorable Mitch McConnell, Majority Leader
United States Senate
317 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510

The Honorable Charles Schumer, Minority Leader
United States Senate
322 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510

The Honorable Paul Ryan, Speaker
United States House of Representatives
H-232, United States Capitol
Washington, DC 20515

The Honorable Nancy Pelosi, Minority Leader
United States House of Representatives
H-204, United States Capitol
Washington, DC 20515

Dear Leader McConnell, Leader Schumer, Speaker Ryan, and Leader Pelosi:

Thank you for your leadership in combatting the opioid epidemic. The undersigned organizations represent a diverse group of stakeholders across the health care spectrum committed to aligning 42 CFR Part 2 (Part 2) with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) for the purposes of treatment, payment, and health care operations (TPO). The SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act, H.R. 6, and the Opioid Crisis Response Act represent critical steps in addressing this crisis. We strongly urge you to include the Overdose Prevention and Patient Safety (OPPS) Act, H.R. 6082, in the final opioid agreement. This language will bolster the effectiveness of other key provisions in the package that promote coordinated care and expand access to treatment.

Part 2, federal regulations that govern confidentiality of drug and alcohol treatment and prevention records, sets requirements limiting the use and disclosure of patients’ substance use records from certain substance use programs. Patients are required to give multiple consents, creating a barrier for integration and coordination of health care. A lack of access to the full scope of medical information for each patient can result in the inability of providers and organizations to deliver safe, high-quality treatment and care coordination. The barriers presented by Part 2 can result in the failure to integrate services and can lead to potentially dangerous medical situations for patients.

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Benefits of Membership

“The AANS/CNS Spine Section brings together neurosurgeons, orthopedic spine surgeons, spine surgery fellows, as well as residents and advanced practice providers focused on spinal surgery. The Spine Section advances our interests, represents us in national advocacy, and disseminates science. Becoming a member means joining this exceptional community and helping it grow.” ...Read More >