On The Floor

Bill addressing opioid crisis goes to House

Robert Weber LRC

FRANKFORT—Attacking the opioid crisis through better state substance use disorder treatment and recovery program standards is at the core of a bill approved by a House committee.

House Bill 124, which was approved today by the House Health and Family Services Committee would require enhanced licensure and quality standards for substance use disorder treatment and recovery after a state review of current standards used statewide. The enhanced standards would cover residential, outpatient and medication-assisted treatment (MAT) services, according to the bill.

The legislation is sponsored by House Health and Family Services Committee Chair Addia Wuchner, R-Florence, and Rep. Kimberly Poore Moser, R-Taylor Mill.

Wuchner said she has traveled the state visiting treatment and recovery centers and found that some programs have “a lot of dynamics and a lot of differences.” 

“That doesn’t mean that every program has to be the same, but there should be components of that program that are consistent with best practices,” said Wuchner.

HB 124 would help Kentucky examine access to treatment and ensure modernized state licensure and quality standards for the best treatment outcomes, said Dr. Allen Brenzel of the Cabinet for Health and Family Services’ Department of Behavioral Health.

“There are now some nationally-recognized models that describe different levels of treatment. Some are medically intensive and more supervised, some are residential with some medical supervision, and others are more community-based,” Brenzel said. “Right now, our licensure categories don’t reflect that.”

 

The bill could also potentially reduce the regulatory burden on providers, bringing more providers on board, said Brenzel.

 

House Bill 124 now goes to the full House for consideration.

 

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