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WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Senate has passed several provisions to legislation aimed at fighting the opioid crisis, most of those provisions introduced by Democrat Senator Joe Donnelly. 

The provisions, if signed into law by President Trump, will be added to the SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act which was also passed by the Senate by a 98-1 vote and signed by the President.

One of the provisions was the Dr. Todd Graham Pain Management, Treatment, and Recovery Act, which was brought to he and Republican Senator Todd Young by way of Republican Congresswoman Jackie Walorski in the U.S. House. 

“This bill directs the Department of Health and Human Services to study medicare’s payment and coverage policies of non-opiate pain killers,” Donnelly said on the Senate floor. “I’m very pleased that the House and Senate have worked together over many months to create this bipartisan legislation.”

Dr. Todd Graham was murdered in South Bend last year when he refused to give the husband of a patient more opioids through a prescription. Donnelly said one of the problems that led to Graham’s death is the over-prescribing of opioid pain killers, which can lead to addiction.

“There are far too many areas in my state of Indiana and throughout America that lack access to meaningful addiction treatment and the trained professional who provide it,” Donnelly said.

Another of his provisions, co-authored with Sen. Lisa Murkowski and Sen. Maggie Hassan, would incentivize addiction treatment providers to work in areas where overdose deaths are common or where there is a shortage of treatment providers.

In return for six years of service in this regard, the federal government will contribute $250,000 to be used to be credited towards those workers student loans. 

(Photo: Marek Slusarczyk/Thinkstock)