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11 new HOPE bills signed into law

Governor Scott Walker signed into law on Monday 11 special session bills that are part of the Heroin, Opiate Prevention and Education (H.O.P.E.) Agenda. The bills were recommended by the Governor’s Task Force on Opioid Abuse.

“In January, I called the State Legislature into a special session to take up bills that address the opioid epidemic and I’m proud to say they passed the 11 bills I’m signing into law today with broad support, creating a multifaceted response to help people receive treatment and recover from addiction,” said Governor Walker on Monday. “Together, we are working to combat this crisis, save lives, and improve public health.”

The 11 new laws target a variety of topics related to the opioid crisis, including increasing access to treatment, expanding Wisconsin’s “Good Samaritan Law” to extend immunity to individuals who call 911 to help a person experiencing an overdose, and permitting more individuals with training to administer opioid antagonists, such as naloxone or Narcan, to those who appear to be experiencing an overdose. (Click here for more information about all of the bills.)

“Today is another important day in the continued fight against opioid addiction and abuse,” said Society President Noel Deep, MD, in this statement on Monday. “In signing 11 special session HOPE Agenda bills into law across the state, Governor Walker is continuing the bipartisan, broad-based collaboration among physicians, the health care community, policymakers and law enforcement to fight this crisis. The HOPE Agenda wisely takes a two-pronged strategy in fighting opioid addiction and abuse: establishing programs to help those who are currently addicted to opioids while also striving to prevent people from becoming addicted in the first place.”

In addition to this new legislation, Gov. Walker also announced on Monday nearly $2.4 million in grants being awarded to 16 counties and three tribal nations by the Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) to increase access to treatment services for opioid abuse.

Each county and tribe receiving a grant is expected to use the most effective and efficient practices for treatment of opioid use disorder, according to this press release. Delivery of services must begin prior to Sept. 1, and grant funding is available through April 30, 2018. It is estimated that 995 people will receive services as result of these awards.

Back to July 20, 2017 Medigram