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

May 23, 2018 In The News

WASHINGTON, DC - This week, the Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (CTSI) was awarded $33 million in grant funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks (R-IN05) is an avid supporter of funding for NIH research programs and advocated for this funding in a letter sent to CTSI exactly one year ago today.

May 17, 2018 News Releases

WASHINGTON, DC Today, the House Committee on Energy and Commerce completed its second mark-up of legislation focused on combating the opioid and heroin crisis. The Committee passed 32 bills, two of which were recently introduced by Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks (R-IN05).

To watch Brooks’ remarks on the Poison Center Network Enhancement Act, click here.

May 5, 2018 In The News

Last month Indiana was awarded a second round of funding for combating the opioid crisis. The $10.9 million provided to the state through the Department of Health and Human Services matches another grant of the same value allocated last year through the 21st Century Cures Act. Signed in December 2016, the legislation has awarded nearly $1 billion to states in their efforts to mitigate an ongoing epidemic of opioid abuse.

May 4, 2018 In The News

Congresswoman Susan Brooks – speaks on the opiod epidemic

We are joined by Congresswoman Susan Brooks on Community Connection!

She is speaking us today on the opiod epidemic.

Learn more about Congresswoman Susan Brooks with the link below:

Apr 25, 2018 News Releases

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, the House Committee on Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health passed H.R. 5329, the Poison Center Network Enhancement Act of 2018, which was recently introduced by Representatives Susan W. Brooks (R-IN), Eliot Engel (D-NY), Joe Barton (R-TX) and Diana DeGette (D-CO) to combat the opioid epidemic.

Apr 25, 2018 In The News

Medical practitioners prescribing controlled substances like opioid drugs would have to meet continuing medical education (CME) requirements and states could set even more training obligations under bipartisan legislation U.S. Rep. Susan Brooks (R-IN) introduced on April 23.

“Opioids are powerful drugs and have the potential to become incredibly addictive,” Rep. Brooks said. “It is imperative for all of our nation’s prescribers to receive adequate training before sending a patient home with a bottle full of pills that could be abused.”

Apr 23, 2018 News Releases

WASHINGTON, DCToday, U.S. Representatives Susan W. Brooks (R-IN05) and Brad Schneider (D-IL10), introduced a bipartisan bill that works to combat the opioid crisis that is sweeping through the country. H.R.5581, the Abuse Deterrent and Prescriber Training (ADAPT) Act of 2018 ensures opioid prescribers have the education necessary to safely prescribe opioid medications to patients.

Apr 22, 2018 In The News

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — A federal agency has awarded Indiana nearly $11 million for the second straight year to fight the state's opioid abuse crisis.

The Health and Human Services funding is among $485 million recently awarded nationwide to combat heroin and opioid abuse.

Apr 19, 2018 News Releases

WASHINGTON, DCHealth and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar announced HHS will soon provide $485 million in grants to help states and territories address the heroin and opioid abuse crisis. Indiana will receive $10.9 million. Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks (R-IN05) provided the following statement:

Apr 19, 2018 In The News

The second round of federal funding to address the opioid epidemic in Indiana has been announced. The state will receive $10.9 million from the 21st Century Cures Act.

Last year, Indiana received the same amount of funding from the law and put it towards efforts including expansion of residential treatment centers, an anti-stigma campaigns and enhancement of the state’s prescription monitoring program.

These new grants will be administrated through the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.