Bill seeks to provide access to drug addiction

ByDonald L. Leech

Jul 5, 2022

DAYTON, Ohio- State research shows Ohio’s death rate from opioid overdoses hit a 10-year high during the COVID-19 pandemic, which is why some are seeking to make it easier to help addicts.

What do you want to know

  • Representative Mike Turner announced details of the Mainstream Addiction and Treatment Act
  • It’s a bill that would allow practitioners to prescribe buprenorphine without Drug Enforcement Administration waivers.
  • Buprenorphine is a prescription drug that helps treat pain and opioid addiction
  • The bill has passed the House of Representatives and is awaiting a vote by the Senate

Liz Korsog has been in recovery for about 22 months, but the journey hasn’t been easy. The first time she tried to potty train, she ended up relapsing.

“This time I did it for myself and I’m working on a program and I kept doing the next right thing and it worked for me,” Korsog said.

While recovering, she received treatment at One Fifteen, an alcohol and abuse rehabilitation center. While there, she took buprenorphine, a prescription drug that helps treat pain and opioid addiction.

“It helps without wanting to use,” she said. “When you use it, you can get sick from it if you try to use it over it.”

Rehab centers across the state are looking to help more people like Korsog, but have had difficulty prescribing it. Under current law, practitioners are required to obtain a waiver from the Drug Enforcement Administration.

At a press conference Tuesday, Rep. Mike Turner (R, OH-10) promoted the General Drug Addiction and Treatment Law. If the bill becomes law, it would allow practitioners to prescribe the drug without waivers. He said this will allow better access to people who need it.

“Buprenorphine gives the ability to help them get back on their feet to restore their life and to save their life in some cases,” Turner said.

The U.S. House of Representatives passed the bill on June 22. It now awaits a vote by the US Senate.

Korsog thinks the bill will help others like her recover and it’s something she thinks is worth fighting for.

“I just want to give back to the community and be able to help in any way I can,” she said.