Kirchhofer's legislation expanding opioid treatment programs signed into law

Posted by: Samantha Holifield  | Monday, March 26, 2018 9:52 am

STATEHOUSE (March 26, 2018) — Gov. Eric Holcomb recently signed into law State Rep. Cindy Kirchhofer’s (R-Beech Grove) legislation increasing the number of opioid treatment programs from 18 to 27. 

This legislation will pair opioid treatment centers with local hospitals and community mental health centers to provide wrap-around services like medical treatment and counseling for Hoosiers beginning the recovery process.

“Hoosiers struggling with drug addiction need a place to go that is accessible and able to address all their health care needs,” said Kirchhofer, chair of the House Committee on Public Health. “To ensure patients have qualified mental health professionals available to them, this new law will streamline the hiring process for addiction treatment providers. To allow qualified employees to begin work while completing a substance abuse treatment program, employers now have the option to hire individuals who have failed a drug screening. This will help keep those vulnerable to drug addiction out of negative environments.” 

Nine additional certified community mental health centers or general acute care hospitals could be approved by the Division of Mental Health and Addiction to operate a new opioid treatment program after June 30, 2018. 

Kirchhofer said some individuals currently travel two or more hours from home to a treatment center. This new law aims to ensure all Hoosiers, particularly in underserved areas, are no more than an hour away from an opioid treatment center. 

House Enrolled Act 1007 goes into effect July 1. Visit iga.in.gov to learn more about this legislation.

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Rep. Kirchhofer (R-Beech Grove) represents House District 89,

which includes portions of Marion County.