WASHINGTON, D.C. (WDTN) — Rep. Mike Turner (OH-10) and Rep. Paul Tonko (NY-20) introduced the Mainstreaming Addiction Treatment Act (MAT), which aims to eliminate limitations on health care professionals prescribing Buprenorphine to treat patients opioid addictions.
Turner said in a release that these limitations are often referred to as the “x-waiver.”
“Experts on the front lines of the opioid crisis agree that Buprenorphine helps treat opioid addiction, yet under current law, we are constricting practitioners’ ability to prescribe this medicine, and in doing so, limiting access to millions of Americans who desperately need help. In fact, over 40% of counties in our country do not a have a physician who is licensed to prescribe this life-saving medicine,” said Turner.
Turner references a study published to the National Institutes of Health that highlights France’s declining opioid overdose deaths after the country took similar measures — making buprenorphine prescriptions possible without a waiver.
According to the Department of Health and Human Services, over 40% of counties in the U.S. do not have a physician who is licensed to prescribe this treatment option.
The introduction of the MAT Act follows the Biden Administration’s decision to reverse a policy under President Trump that reduced restrictions on practitioners seeking to prescribe Buprenorphine.