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Neurosurgery Joins Other Medical Specialties to Request Lawmakers Include the Overdose Prevention and Patient Safety Act in the Final Opioid Agreement

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The Honorable Greg Walden
Chairman
House Energy & Commerce Committee
2125 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515

The Honorable Frank Pallone
Ranking Member
House Energy & Commerce Committee
2322A Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515

Dear Chairman Walden and Ranking Member Pallone:

The undersigned organizations, representing a cross-section of medical specialties, write to reiterate our strong support for protecting our patients by 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). In June, the U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation (H.R. 6082) to align Part 2 and HIPAA by an overwhelming bipartisan vote of 35757. We urge leadership to honor the House’s strong vote and the broad support for H.R. 6082 within the healthcare community by ensuring its inclusion in any final legislation negotiated by the House and Senate.

Modifying Part 2 to ensure that HIPAA-covered entities have access to a patient’s entire medical record will improve patient safety, treatment, and outcomes across the care delivery spectrum, enhancing the effectiveness of the entire opioid package. The House and Senate bills contain myriad initiatives designed to enhance the treatment and coordination of care for persons with substance use disorder. However, the success of some of these new initiatives, such as Comprehensive Opioid Recovery Centers and expanding Medicare coverage of certain services furnished by opioid treatment programs, will be hampered without harmonizing Part 2 with HIPAA. As we build out an addiction treatment infrastructure, it is imperative to integrate substance use disorder, mental health, and primary care services to produce the best patient outcomes and establish the most effective approach to caring for people with complex health care needs.

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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 >