Congressman Turner released the following statement announcing the support of the Buckeye State Sheriffs Association and the Ohio High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) for the TREAT Act:

“The heroin epidemic continues to grow in communities across the country, and the TREAT Act will help those who need it most,” said Congressman Mike Turner.  “The support from both the Buckeye State Sheriffs Association and Ohio HIDTA underline the importance of the policies that would be enacted through the TREAT Act.  Ohio’s law enforcement professionals are on the front lines battling the heroin epidemic, and I appreciate their support for this commonsense legislation.” 

The TREAT Act is a bipartisan bill to increase flexibility in how existing federal funding can be used to combat the heroin epidemic.

In their letter of support, the Buckeye State Sheriffs Association stated: 

If counties were reimbursed for the programs and treatment of individuals jail space would be freed-up for the hardened criminals. A Medicaid program is available to addicted individuals prior to incarceration and should be available while incarcerated. The continuum of care for addicted individuals is paramount to the success for becoming “Drug Free”.

Ohio High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) expressed their support, stating:

I fully support H.R. 4076 (TREAT Act) and the access it provides for treatment to those who are incarcerated. I truly believe this will help our jails, communities and those who have addiction issues. This may be the step in preventing further use and potential death to those who are incarcerated. 

Areas of Impact

·      The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) prohibits the use of grants from its Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT) for substance abuse treatment services provided to individuals who are incarcerated. Under this bill, these resources will be made available to individuals in both community-based and institutional settings.

·      Under Medicaid’s Institution for Mental Disease (IMD) exclusion, facilities with more than sixteen beds are not eligible for reimbursement. As such, the IMD exclusion prevents reimbursement for substance abuse treatment provided to incarcerated individuals who are otherwise eligible for and enrolled in Medicaid. Under this bill, substance abuse treatment provided in correctional institutions would become eligible for reimbursement.

Congressman Turner has been fighting this issue in Southwest Ohio since 2013:

·      December 18, 2013: Toured Soin Medical Center, where issue of Heroin Exposed Newborns was raised.

·      March 10, 2014: Met with area hospitals to discuss the growing issue of Heroin Exposed Newborns.

·      May 15, 2014: Visited Dayton Children’s Hospital NICU to discuss infant heroin exposure and the withdrawal and recovery process.

·      June 30, 2014: Held a Community Forum on the Effects of the Heroin Epidemic on Newborns.

·      August 27, 2014: Visited the Women’s Recovery Center.

·      May 2015: Held Community Summit on Heroin Exposed Infants.

·      August 21, 2015: Toured Greene County Jail and Green Leaf Alcohol and Drug Treatment Program; met with criminal justice system administrators and substance abuse and mental health leadership.

·      November 18, 2015: Met with with ONDCP Director Michael Botticelli and introduced the TREAT Act with Congresswoman Marcia L. Fudge (OH-11) and Congresswoman Niki Tsongas (MA-3).