DCBA Attorneys to Present and Moderate at 2020 Rx Summit

Four DCBA Law & Policy attorneys have been selected to speak or moderate at the Rx Drug Abuse & Heroin Summit in Nashville next month. DCBA will also exhibit at the conference.

Partner Stacey Worthy will join two nationally renowned addiction physicians in presenting, “Duking It Out Over Electronic Data-Sharing: Law, Ethics, and Best Practices in Addiction Medicine” on Monday, April 13:

Privacy regulations under 42 CFR Part 2 are intended to mitigate stigma, reduce discrimination, and encourage individuals to seek treatment for substance use disorders (SUDs). There is current debate over whether, in the era of electronic health records, Part 2’s protections are overly-broad, prevent care coordination, and result in inappropriate prescribing of controlled substances. In response, federal policymakers have begun taking action to loosen Part 2 protections and clarify ambiguities.

Ms. Worthy will provide an overview of health privacy laws, regulations, and recently proposed rules and legislation. H. Westley Clark, M.D., M.P.H., J.D. will provide arguments in support of the current regime and describe best practices involving privacy protections. Andrea Grubb Barthwell, M.D., DFASAM will provide arguments in support of a new regime that allows for greater data sharing among providers.

Senior Associate Shruti Kulkarni will speak during the session entitled, “Innovative Treatments in Jails: What Correctional Administrators, Health Care Providers, and Advocates Need to Know” on Monday, April 13:

Two-thirds of individuals in jail meet the criteria for substance dependence or use. Nevertheless, correctional facilities have traditionally not been resourced adequately to provide SUD treatment, including medication when appropriate. Since 2018, numerous court cases have been filed that have helped draw attention to SUD treatment for incarcerated individuals at the national, state, and local levels.

Ms. Kulkarni will join John W. Thompson, M.D., Chair and Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Tulane University School of Medicine, and Sheriff Craig Apple of Albany County, New York in discussing timely medical, legal, and operational developments for SUD treatment in correctional settings.

Associate Daniel McClughen will co-present the session entitled, “Driving Change: Use of Mobile Medical Services and Technology to Improve Addiction Treatment Capacity” on Tuesday, April 14:

The use of mobile treatment resources and technology, such as telehealth, treatment vans, mobile apps, and screening kiosks, has the potential to positively impact the nation’s drug overdose crisis. Yet, there are many medical, legal, and practical issues that must be considered when implementing such resources in addiction treatment settings.

Mr. McClughen will explain how health care programs and clinicians can deploy mobile resources and technology in an evolving legal environment. He will co-present with Eric Weintraub, M.D., who will discuss his experience implementing a telemedicine program and mobile treatment unit (MTU) to deliver medication-based treatments to patients with opioid use disorder (OUD). Dr. Weintraub will also share outcomes data and provide recommendations for implementing successful telemedicine and MTU programs. Managing Partner Michael Barnes, a member of the Rx Summit advisory board since the conference’s inception, will moderate this session.

Mr. Barnes will also moderate two additional Rx Summit sessions:

– Stigma as a Barrier to Treatment and Recovery: Developing a Targeted Response, Wednesday, April 15

– OUD and the Americans with Disabilities Act: Eliminating Discriminatory Barriers to Treatment and Recovery, Wednesday, April 15

Marketing and Communications Manager Meredith Shelton will represent DCBA at the firm’s Rx Summit booth during exhibit hours.

DEA Issues Proposed Rule to Expand Access to Mobile Opioid Treatment

On February 26, 2020, DEA issued a proposed rule titled Registration Requirements for Narcotic Treatment Programs with Mobile Components. The proposed rule would waive the requirement of a separate registration for opioid treatment programs (OTPs) that utilize a mobile component.

The Controlled Substances Act (CSA) generally requires, with certain exceptions, all persons who dispense controlled substances to obtain a separate registration at each “principle place of business or professional practice” where they dispense a controlled substance. The CSA also, however, authorizes the Administrator of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), by delegation of the Attorney General, to issue regulations that would waive the registration requirement in certain instances if he finds it consistent with the public health and safety.

If finalized, the proposed rule would waive the requirement of a separate registration for OTPs that provide medication for opioid use disorder out of mobile vehicles. It would allow registrants to dispense controlled medications from schedules II-V for the purpose of maintenance or detoxification services at a location remote from, but within the same state as, the OTP’s registered location. A registrant that intends to operate a mobile OTP must notify the local DEA office in writing and obtain explicit written approval from the local DEA office prior to operating the mobile OTP.

DEA stated that the proposed rule is consistent with the public health and safety because it will expand access to OUD treatment in rural and other underserved areas with minimal risk of diversion.

DCBA Partner Discusses Drug Pricing Bills in Congress on Fox Business

DCBA Law & Policy Partner Michael Barnes recently made an appearance on Fox Business Live, where he discussed conflicting messages about the impact of the U.S. drug abuse crisis on corporate profits. Barnes then analyzed drug pricing bills in Congress and how they could affect Americans’ access to new medicines for conditions like Alzheimer’s and cancer. The original program aired on December 12, 2019.

DCBA Partner Moderates at Pain Management Summit

DCBA Law & Policy partner Stacey L. Worthy moderated a panel discussion today at the sixth annual Summit on Balanced Pain Management. Worthy led a dialogue between Ann Quinlan Colwell, PhD, RN, of the American Society for Pain Management Nursing (ASPMN); Ellen Blackwell, MSW, of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS); and Matt Salo of the National Association of State Medicaid Directors. The panel addressed several topics, including how CMS is approaching ‘patient-centered care’ and Medicaid’s coverage of integrative pain management.

Read the Institute for Pain Access’s recap of the entire Summit here: https://instituteforpatientaccess.org/patient-centered-care-dominates-pain-policy-summit/

U.S. Surgeon General: Warm Handoffs Are ‘Immediate Priority’

On Thursday, October 24, the Senate Finance Committee held a full committee hearing on the topic of substance abuse in the United States. Among the witnesses was the Surgeon General of the United States, Jerome M. Adams, MD, MPH. Dr. Adams detailed the current approach of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), highlighted reasons for optimism, and identified areas where continued efforts are necessary.

Dr. Adams stated that “HHS’s immediate priorities include…emergency department medication-assisted treatment (MAT) programs with warm handoffs following overdose…”.

Two of DCBA’s attorneys, Michael C. Barnes and Daniel C. McClughen, authored one of the first-ever law review articles on the topic of warm-handoffs. The article was published in the Fall 2018 issue of the University of Memphis Law Review. Barnes and McClughen have continued their work on warm handoffs through the Warm Handoff Initiative, an initiative of the Center for U.S. Policy.

Read the entire testimony of the Surgeon General and other witnesses.

Read the Barnes & McClughen article on warm-handoffs.

Learn more about the Warm Handoff Initiative.