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Committee approves Rep. Hornberger’s plan to combat opioid crisis
RELEASE|November 4, 2021

Opioid Opt-Out plan would give patients choices, control

The House Health Policy Committee today approved state Rep. Pamela Hornberger’s plan to ensure health care providers offer patients an opportunity to avoid being offered, prescribed or administered opioids.

Hornberger’s measure is part of a bipartisan package of bills designed to further combat Michigan’s growing opioid epidemic.

“Legislators on both sides of the aisle agree that this is good policy,” Hornberger said. “To combat Michigan’s opioid crisis, we must ensure patients are given the opportunity to opt-out of opioid use and informed of alternative options for pain management.”

House Bills 5261-5264 require health care providers and insurers to make non-opioid directive forms available upon plan enrollment. Non-opioid forms not only allow patients to make their own medical decisions, but also bring patient awareness to alternative options to prevent initial exposure to opioids.

“Over-prescription of opioids from health care providers is the root cause of addiction,” Hornberger said. “This change could protect countless patients from the risk of lifelong addiction to opioid painkillers.”

Earlier this year, Hornberger voted for continued funding for the state’s opioid epidemic response in the budget year that began on Oct. 1. In the 2020 budget year, she also voted to prioritize $30 million for unmet opioid substance abuse treatment and prevention needs.

The Opioid Opt-Out plan now moves to be considered by the full House.

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