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house Bill H.R. 3832

Should VA Healthcare Providers Share Info With State Prescription Drug Monitoring Programs?

Argument in favor

Increasing cooperation between the VA and states will help curb the prescription drug epidemic that is particularly harsh on veterans.

OlderNWiser's Opinion
···
05/21/2018
Transparency and sharing are usually good thing unless they expose people to being killed, such as undercover agents. I worry about the GOP’s belief in punishment rather than treatment and prevention however. So this is a very very very qualified yes—yes if we work on pain management including with cannabis and other drugs formerly declared elicit while opioids are thrown at everyone everywhere for the profit of the drug companies.
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Sue's Opinion
···
05/21/2018
All of the prescription drug databases should be linked, just as EMRs should all be linked in the future. This prescription drug database has been used for years, and providers check it with each patient requesting a new or continued pain medication prescription. It shows if the patient is getting prescriptions elsewhere or from multiple providers. Adding the VA system benefits all the other providers who see VA patients outside.
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Jennifer 's Opinion
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05/21/2018
Yes, but only if it triggers further services to help the veteran (e.g. pain mgmt. with use of co-therapies or alternative healing measures, counseling for suicidal ideation, PTSD, and other emerging crisis related concerns), not to have them wallow in physical or emotional pain on some waiting list. To just receive their names from other states may just target them for no other reason than they’ve moved among states several times, or sought relief, but no one was helping them, or how about numerous surgeries that all required opiates? After receiving 7 major surgeries in under 4 yrs, on and off opiates, I would have hated to have been targeted for “abuse,” due to circumstances beyond my control, and treated like an addict when it was never the case. Or how about losing my 2A rights, or who knows what else abuse could come of this? Treat this narrowly and targeted for what it’s intent is, and I say yes. But we must always be mindful of overzealous politicians on either side.
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Argument opposed

This bill only addresses one issue with the health of American veterans and not the root cause of opioid addiction.

Raneiya's Opinion
···
05/21/2018
These addictive drugs were a pacifier for not having to deal with the mental anguish these men and women deal with when they come home. The US military needs to develop a comprehensive mental health program for the troops who are mentally affected.
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Bwana's Opinion
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05/21/2018
Big brother is big enough. Good intentions don’t justify any and all intrusions into doctor patient privilege
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James's Opinion
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05/21/2018
There is something very wrong, the moment a prescription is filled to anyone veteran or not the information is recorded in a federal database!! scheduled drugs are recorded with DEA and other databases, as a Veteran I know firsthand from 20+ yrs experience how tightly the VA controls scheduled Drugs in the upper Midwest the Minneapolis and St. Cloud VA. I’ve never heard a vet say the VA got me hooked. Total BS. Disclosing information to “state” databases will only add an additional layer of bureaucracy. Opioid addiction in vets IMHO is most likely heroin based. I listen to emergency calls on the scanner the overdoes are from heroin. If you want to help the veterans expand drug addiction recognition and treatment programs.
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bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The senate has not voted
      senate Committees
      Committee on Veterans' Affairs
  • The house Passed May 21st, 2018
    Roll Call Vote 377 Yea / 2 Nay
      house Committees
      Health
      Committee on Veterans' Affairs
    IntroducedSeptember 26th, 2017

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What is House Bill H.R. 3832?

This bill ― the Veterans Opioid Abuse Prevention Act― would require Dept. of Veterans Affairs (VA) healthcare providers who prescribe controlled substances to veterans to seek information regarding veterans from state programs that monitor prescription drug use. The VA would be authorized to enter into a memorandum of understanding with a national network of state-based prescription drug monitoring programs to perform the queries.

Impact

Veterans; states; and pharmaceutical companies.

Cost of House Bill H.R. 3832

A CBO cost estimate is unavailable.

More Information

In-DepthCongressman Neal Dunn (R-FL) introduced the Veterans Opioid Abuse Prevention Act (HR 3832) which seeks to connect Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) health providers to a national network of state-based prescription drug monitoring programs (PDMPs).

The motive of this legislation is to track abuse patterns among veterans so as to curb the opioid abuse issue in America and beyond.

“This was in response to the President’s Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis,” a report issued in July, said Dunn, who served in the Army and is a House VA Committee member. “This is a good bill. I feel it’s going to get a lot of bipartisan support.”

Currently, there is no registry for “pain pills” prescribed to veterans, and this bill would make it easier to track whom was issued such medication that can be very addicting.

The bill is currently in the House VA Healthcare Subcommittee.

“More than 140 people in the U.S. die from opioid abuse each day, and veterans are twice as likely as civilians to die of overdose and suicide. This is unacceptable,” said Dr. Dunn.

The legislation is cosponsored by Reps Claudia Tenney, (R-NY); Bruce Poliquin (R-ME); Jody Arrington (R-TX); and Paul Tonko, (D-NY).


Media:

Summary by Lucas McConnell

(Photo Credit: jetcityimage / istock)

AKA

Veterans Opioid Abuse Prevention Act

Official Title

To amend title 38, United States Code, to provide for access by Department of Veterans Affairs health care providers to State prescription drug monitoring programs.

    Transparency and sharing are usually good thing unless they expose people to being killed, such as undercover agents. I worry about the GOP’s belief in punishment rather than treatment and prevention however. So this is a very very very qualified yes—yes if we work on pain management including with cannabis and other drugs formerly declared elicit while opioids are thrown at everyone everywhere for the profit of the drug companies.
    Like (44)
    Follow
    Share
    These addictive drugs were a pacifier for not having to deal with the mental anguish these men and women deal with when they come home. The US military needs to develop a comprehensive mental health program for the troops who are mentally affected.
    Like (7)
    Follow
    Share
    Why does this not involve a comprehensive national data base? Why is this specific to our Vets? If 140 people are dying daily from opioid abuse, why isn’t this Congress looking at that total number? This is the same Congress that until this election cycle, did nothing about Opiods, their addictive nature, or Opiods as a street drug. Addict Treatment is illusive and exiting Opiods from the legal market is impossible until we get $Big Pharma$ out of government. **Legalize Cannabis now, the research is in on CBD treatment.**
    Like (17)
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    Prevent opioid abuse by legalizing cannabis, saving countless lives. Do it. Be a hero for our heroes, and let the healing begin.
    Like (16)
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    All of the prescription drug databases should be linked, just as EMRs should all be linked in the future. This prescription drug database has been used for years, and providers check it with each patient requesting a new or continued pain medication prescription. It shows if the patient is getting prescriptions elsewhere or from multiple providers. Adding the VA system benefits all the other providers who see VA patients outside.
    Like (13)
    Follow
    Share
    Yes, but only if it triggers further services to help the veteran (e.g. pain mgmt. with use of co-therapies or alternative healing measures, counseling for suicidal ideation, PTSD, and other emerging crisis related concerns), not to have them wallow in physical or emotional pain on some waiting list. To just receive their names from other states may just target them for no other reason than they’ve moved among states several times, or sought relief, but no one was helping them, or how about numerous surgeries that all required opiates? After receiving 7 major surgeries in under 4 yrs, on and off opiates, I would have hated to have been targeted for “abuse,” due to circumstances beyond my control, and treated like an addict when it was never the case. Or how about losing my 2A rights, or who knows what else abuse could come of this? Treat this narrowly and targeted for what it’s intent is, and I say yes. But we must always be mindful of overzealous politicians on either side.
    Like (9)
    Follow
    Share
    Big brother is big enough. Good intentions don’t justify any and all intrusions into doctor patient privilege
    Like (7)
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    Information should be coordinated to lower the probability of of overdoses
    Like (5)
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    If a veteran is receiving pain-killing medication from a non-VA physician then yes, that information needs to be accessed by the VA.
    Like (4)
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    Increasing cooperation between the VA and states will help curb the prescription drug epidemic that is particularly harsh on veterans.
    Like (4)
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    If college was free as in other first world countries this wouldn’t be an issue. It’s about time we brought this country into the twenty-first century
    Like (4)
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    There is something very wrong, the moment a prescription is filled to anyone veteran or not the information is recorded in a federal database!! scheduled drugs are recorded with DEA and other databases, as a Veteran I know firsthand from 20+ yrs experience how tightly the VA controls scheduled Drugs in the upper Midwest the Minneapolis and St. Cloud VA. I’ve never heard a vet say the VA got me hooked. Total BS. Disclosing information to “state” databases will only add an additional layer of bureaucracy. Opioid addiction in vets IMHO is most likely heroin based. I listen to emergency calls on the scanner the overdoes are from heroin. If you want to help the veterans expand drug addiction recognition and treatment programs.
    Like (4)
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    The key word is share. If VA is forced to share information, likewise, the State should share information. We understand the ”double dippers” may have private health plans.
    Like (3)
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    As a pharmacist at a non-VA hospital, it is sometimes very difficult to obtain accurate information on a patient's home medication list if they are a VA patient who cannot communicate well when admitted. At least reporting of controlled substance filling history to states' registries would help a little.
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    No question about it. We as health care providers need to know who, when, where, and how many of any and all controlled substances when patients come to us, no matter where from. I work in a rural Community Health Center. Many of my patients are veterans and share their care between us and the VA. It is imperative that we know what medications they are taking so that we can treat them safely and effectively
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    Its a cruel thing to do but we have a better tracking system for opioid medications than we do for deadly combat firearms. I have been on Workers Compensation for several years and just these past few years they are now sending reports to my physician detailing my opioid prescription(s), who is prescribing them, and what am I being prescribed. I think that patients who have several maladies should be tracked in the same way for all of their medications, If they were doing that a few years ago I could have prevented an accidental overdose.
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    If the government feels the need to monitor my purchases of allergy medication on a national level and deny my purchase even if I have only 1 pill left, then it only seems fair that every citizen should have their prescription history monitored regardless of whether the citizen is a private citizen or military personnel.
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    No. The VA needs to be fully funded so that it can care for returning service members with respect to opioid addiction, PTSD and all forms of mental and physical impairments, without reliance on the states. It's not like the military doesn't have the money.
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    H.R 3832― the Veterans Opioid Abuse Prevention Act I’m in full support of bill H.R 3832― the Veterans Opioid Abuse Prevention Act― Which would require Dept. of Veterans Affairs (VA) healthcare providers who prescribe controlled substances to veterans to seek information regarding veterans from state programs that monitor prescription drug use. The VA would be authorized to enter into a memorandum of understanding with a national network of state-based prescription drug monitoring programs to perform the queries. Increasing cooperation between the VA and states will help curb the prescription drug epidemic that is particularly harsh on veterans. 5*21*18
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    Perhaps, the opioid crisis amongst veterans could be curbed if they are receiving other prescriptions from another medical facility. Also, this transparency could help with PTSD and suicide prevention for veterans when they are in an inner personal crisis and cannot see a VA psychologist when the crisis happens.
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