|AAOS Commends Continued Work on Opioid Legislation |
The American Association of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) commends the House Energy and Commerce Committee, together with the House Ways and Means Committee, for advancing important legislation to help combat the opioid crisis. As has been noted by the committees, overdose deaths from opioids, including prescription opioids, have increased by more than five times since 1999. The AAOS acknowledges this growing problem and believes that comprehensive reforms are necessary with input and assistance from all stakeholders.
To that point, AAOS has been working closely with legislators in both the House and the Senate as they continue to move forward on their respective opioid-related packages. As AAOS expressed in letters to the Energy and Commerce Committee as well as the Senate health committee, AAOS supports increased access to evidence-based pain related treatment, research into innovative treatments, better prescription monitoring, and effective education for physicians and patients. We also encourage electronic prescribing of medications as a means of promoting patient safety and urge caution in the area of prescription limits. Finally, AAOS is also working on several initiatives – from public service announcements to a “pain relief toolkit” – to encourage AAOS members to practice safe and effective pain management and treatment.
“We have a unique opportunity to save lives, and we can’t lose sight of the real-world impact of our actions throughout this process,” said House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Walden. “We owe it to the families of the more than 115 Americans who die from opioids every single day to come together and advance legislation that can help stem this tide.”
After two Energy and Commerce Committee markups:
- 57 bills advanced to the House of Representatives
- 53 passed by voice votes
- 4 passed by roll call votes
For more on what AAOS is doing to address the opioid epidemic, visit www.aaos.org/opioids.