Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks

Representing the 5th District of Indiana
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Addressing Substance Abuse

 

Indiana is one of four states where the drug overdose mortality rate has quadrupled since 1999. It is estimated that more than 91 Americans die every day from an opioid overdose. Over the past 10 years, more than 2,000 Hoosiers have died from overdoses of opioids, including fentanyl, heroin, hydrocodone, methadone and morphine. This is a crisis for Indiana and for our nation, and addressing it is a priority for me in Congress.

The reality is that although Americans make up just five percent of the world’s population, 80 percent of the global opioid supply is consumed right here in the United States. Improper prescribing practices are one of the root causes of this national epidemic. I’ve seen the impact of overprescription of legal, prescription drugs throughout my career as a Deputy Mayor, U.S. Attorney, and member of Congress. I’ve heard from Hoosier medical schools and professionals that more training and consistent guidelines are needed when it comes to pain management and prescribing practices of these sometimes necessary and incredibly powerful prescription drugs. It’s why I introduced H.R. 4641, which established a task-force of providers, pain management specialists, patient advocates, people in recovery and the relevant federal agencies to review, modify and update best practices for pain management and guidelines for prescribers of pain medication that were released by the Centers for Disease Control in 2016.

This legislation became law in 2016 as one piece of the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA). CARA strives to curb prescription opioid abuse and heroin use through enhanced prevention, treatment, recovery, education and law enforcement efforts. I will continue to work in Congress to offer common sense solutions to address this crisis that has devastated so many Hoosier families and communities. In addition, I will continue to work with President Trump and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, head of the President’s Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis, to address heroin and opioid abuse in this country.

To read a blog post I wrote for the American Legislative Exchange Council on how government at every level is working together to address heroin and opioid abuse, click here.

To watch a statement I made about why legislation like H.R. 4641 and CARA are so important, click here.

To watch my statement in the Health Subcommittee about the heroin and opioid epidemic in Indiana and our country, click here

To learn more about work done to combat the opioid and heroin crisis, visit Energy and Commerce's website here

More on Addressing Substance Abuse

Nov 1, 2017 News Releases

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, the President’s Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis, led by New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, conducted their last meeting and released their final recommendations.

Oct 31, 2017 In The News

175 Americans die of opioid overdose every two and a half weeks.

The crowd at the 8th Annual Prescription Drug Abuse Symposium fell silent at that number.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie gave the keynote address at the symposium in Indianapolis Monday afternoon. He stressed this national problem is a disease. 

“This epidemic started not on our street corners, but in our doctor's offices, in our hospitals," Christie said. "We created this problem, we did. People are dying because we refuse to acknowledge the problem we created." 

Oct 30, 2017 In The News

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – There’s always plenty of headlines coming out of Washington D.C.

Congresswoman Susan Brooks stopped by Daybreak to discuss some of those items making news out of D.C.

Among the topics Representative Brooks discusses are the Russia investigation, the opioid problem and tax reform.

Oct 30, 2017 In The News

INDIANAPOLIS — Americans need to rid themselves of stigmas toward those addicted to opioids in order to fight the crisis, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said Monday in Indianapolis.

"This epidemic started not on our street corners. This epidemic started in our doctors' offices. This epidemic started in our hospitals," Christie said. "We created this problem."

"People who are dying today are dying because we refuse to acknowledge the problem we created," Christie told about 500 people at a prescription drug abuse symposium.

Oct 26, 2017 News Releases

WASHINGTON, DC – Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks (R-IN05) issued the following statement after attending President Trump’s announcement where he declared the opioid crisis a nationwide public health emergency:

Oct 26, 2017 In The News

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Energy and Commerce Committee, chaired by Rep. Greg Walden (R-OR), today held a hearing on federal efforts to combat the opioid crisis.

"The primary purpose of this hearing is to hear from the federal agencies charged with implementing the provisions of the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA) and the 21st Century Cures Act," said Chairman Walden during his opening remarks. "But it also allows this committee to have an important conversation with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA)."

Oct 25, 2017 News Releases

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Susan W.

Oct 11, 2017 News Releases

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks (R-IN05) testified before the House Energy and Commerce Committee as part of a bipartisan “Member Day,” where representatives both on and off the committee shared proposals for ways to put an end to a crisis that is rapidly sweeping through communities across the country and taking too many American lives. 

Sep 20, 2017 In The News

Indiana, not spared by a nationwide opioid crisis, will receive nearly $5 million in federal funding from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to tackle opioid abuse, U.S. Rep. Susan Brooks (R-IN) announced on Monday.

“Combatting an epidemic that continues to sweep through our country, hitting Hoosiers hard and taking American lives at an astonishing rate, requires attention on all fronts,” said Brooks, a member of the House Energy and Commerce’s Health Subcommittee.

Sep 18, 2017 News Releases

Carmel, IN – The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recently announced that Indiana will receive nearly $5 million in federal funding to combat the opioid crisis. Specifically, the state will receive $3.6 million from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) for health centers across the state to tackle mental health issues. In addition, Indiana will receive $1.7 million from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) to support prevention, treatment, and recovery efforts.