U.S. House Passes Spanberger’s Major Bipartisan Bill to Combat Addiction, Reauthorize Critical Substance Use Disorder Programs

Jun 23, 2022
Healthcare
Press

The Summer Barrow Prevention, Treatment, and Recovery Act is Named After Summer Barrow, a Virginian Who Tragically Lost Her Life to a Fentanyl Overdose Two Years Ago

WASHINGTON, D.C. — As overdose rates in Virginia and across the country continue to rise, a bipartisan majority of the U.S. House last night voted to pass U.S. Rep. Abigail Spanberger’s legislation to strengthen support for programs that combat substance use disorder and addiction.

Spanberger’s bipartisan Summer Barrow Prevention, Treatment, and Recovery Act authorizes more than $900 million in annual funding through the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration (SAMHSA) to support American communities’ fight against the substance use disorder epidemic.Specifically, the bill would reauthorize several substance use disorder programs. These authorizations include key programs focused on overdose prevention, first responder training, co-prescribing programs, pregnant and postpartum women substance use disorder treatment, and alternatives to opioids in emergency rooms.

The U.S. House voted to pass Spanberger’s legislation as part of the Restoring Hope for Mental Health and Well-Being Act.

“Last night’s passage of my bipartisan Summer Barrow Prevention, Treatment, and Recovery Act signals a strong response to the scourge of addiction and substance use disorder we’ve seen in Virginia’s communities and across the country,” said Spanberger. “This bill recognizes the deep and long-lasting addiction challenges faced by so many loved ones, friends, and neighbors. My bill can send a message of hope to those who are struggling today, and I urge the U.S. Senate to move quickly to reauthorize these critical programs, redouble our efforts against addiction, and lend an extra hand to the selfless members of our local communities who provide help and a path towards recovery to others.”

Spanberger’s bipartisan bill is named after Summer Barrow, a Virginian who lost her life to a fentanyl overdose in January 2020.

BACKGROUND

In March 2022, Spanberger joined Virginia law enforcement officials, Virginia community organizations, Virginia recovery advocates, and the family of Summer Barrow to announce the introduction of the legislation. Click here to watch their comments, and click here for photos.

Following its introduction, Spanberger’s office released a wide-ranging list of Virginia-based and national organizations — including recovery advocates, law enforcement departments, and healthcare professionals — endorsing the Summer Barrow Prevention, Treatment, and Recovery Act.

The Summer Barrow Prevention, Treatment, and Recovery Act is cosponsored by U.S. Representatives Kelly Armstrong (R-ND-AL), Tom O’Halleran (D-AZ-01), and María Elvira Salazar (R-FL-27). Click here for a one-pager on the legislation, and click here for the full bill text.

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