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ASAM Responds to RFI from ASPE Regarding the Ensuring Patient Access and Effective Drug Enforcement Act of 2016

August 28, 2019


On August 28, ASAM submitted a comment letter to the Department of Health and Human Services’ Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) in response to an RFI required by the Ensuring Patient Access and Effective Drug Enforcement Act of 2016. 


In its letter, ASAM discussed the current obstacles to legitimate patient access to controlled substances, including efforts by distributors and regulators to prevent diversion of controlled substances that may be inadvertently restricting patient access to schedule III medications used in the treatment of opioid use disorder. ASAM also stressed the importance of increasing access to medical education, training opportunities, and comprehensive clinical guidance for pain management and opioid prescribing. Specifically, ASAM mentioned its Continuing Medical Education (CME) offerings, as well as The ASAM Handbook on Pain and Addiction, both powerful resources for educating the addiction treatment workforce. Finally, ASAM’s letter highlighted the vital role of state prescription drug monitoring programs (PDMP) in ensuring quality, safe and effective coordination of care for those suffering from substance use disorder.


Read the letter here.