180912 hill h r 6 senate


September 12, 2018



The U.S. Chamber of Commerce strongly supports the bipartisan “Opioid Crisis Response Act of 2018.”

The Chamber is committed to identifying and advancing solutions to combat an opioid epidemic ravaging families and destroying the lives of thousands each year. This epidemic is also crippling community and employer efforts to staff workforce needs, create new jobs, and expand commerce. Congress must consider comprehensive legislation that tackles the myriad of causes, such as the flood of illicit drugs into our country, while removing the litany of barriers that inhibit prevention, recovery and treatment options.

The Chamber urges you to pass H.R. 6 and work collaboratively in conference with the House to enact several critical provisions. The Chamber believes such an opioid package should:

  • Prevent the shipment of synthetic opioids into the United States through the international mail system by allowing the U.S. Customs and Border Protection access to electronic data that will facilitate the identification of packages containing illicit contents.
  • Improve interoperability and data sharing of Prescription Drug Monitoring Programs.
  • Align currently conflicting protections and allow providers access to a patient’s entire medical record, including information about the patient’s substance use disorder at a patient’s request.
  • Permit the disposal of controlled substances by hospice programs to reduce diversion or misuses.
  • Provide companies greater access to anonymized information through the Automated Reports and Consolidated Ordering System (ARCOS) to help identify, report and stop suspicious orders of opioids.

The Chamber also strongly supports the Senate’s removal of the end stage renal disease (ESRD) provision included in the House-passed version of H.R. 6. This harmful provision would burden employers already struggling to provide robust health benefits with hundreds of millions of dollars in additional costs.

This crisis has many different causes, and a multipronged legislative solution is critical if it is to be addressed successfully. We applaud the bipartisan, thoughtful efforts to advance legislation to combat this crisis and we urge the Senate to pass H.R. 6.

The Chamber looks forward to working with stakeholders and lawmakers during the conference process and to helping enact solutions to stem the crisis.


Neil L. Bradley

180912 hill h r 6 senate