Senate Takes Action on Opioid Legislation

Sep 21, 2018

This week the Senate overwhelmingly passed a bill focused on stemming the opioid crisis that’s raging in Virginia and across the nation.

It’s an election year so most serious legislative proposals are being moved until after the midterms, but senators came together to pass a sweeping opioid bill. It attempts to curb illegal drugs from getting into the nation, while also strengthening recovery centers and prevention programs.

Credit Rog Cogswell, Creative Commons

Virginia Democratic Senator Tim Kaine says the legislation is essential.  “Look, it is, as you know, a massive problem in Virginia and we feel very very good about it.”

Virginia’s senior Democratic Senator Mark Warner got four provisions in the final bill, including three focused on expanding the nation’s telehealth services.  

Kaine says that’s vital for rural areas like Southwest Virginia.  “You know you can’t help people in like the coalfields or other parts of rural Virginia when there’s no providers nearby.”

The Senate opioid legislation still has to melded with a House passed bill before it can be signed into law.

This report, provided by Virginia Public Radio, was made possible with support from the Virginia Education Association.