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Mullin Leads Colleagues in Pressing Biden Administration to Take Action on Part 2

Government and Politics

September 12, 2022


Mullin Leads Colleagues in Pressing Biden Administration to Take Action on Part 2

Congressman Markwayne Mullin (OK-02) led seven of his House Republican colleagues in sending a letter to Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra recently, urging the Secretary to release the long overdue 42 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 2 proposed rule to modernize substance use disorder privacy regulations as required by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. 42 CFR Part 2 acted as a firewall between doctors and patients, obstructing doctors from seeing a patient’s full medical record and previous substance use history. This rule, which, by law, was to be released in March 2021, will ensure that doctors have access to patients’ addiction medical information and will prevent tragic overdoses and improve patient safety.

This outdated regulation has contributed to the opioid epidemic by allowing individuals who have previously struggled with opioid addiction to be unintentionally treated with more opioids. In the case of Jessie Grubb, the segregation of her medical records cost her her life. Jessie was treated with opioids after surgery by a doctor who had no knowledge of her substance use history, despite Jessie filling out the proper paperwork to give her doctor permission to view her whole medical history. She passed away from an opioid overdose the next day.

Mullin has long advocated for 42 CFR Part 2 reform. In 2017, Mullin sponsored H.R. 3545, the Overdose Prevention and Patient Safety Act, to give doctors access to information that can prevent tragic overdoses and improve patient safety. The bill passed in the House the same year and was signed into law in 2020 as part of the CARES Act.

Reps. Dan Crenshaw (TX-02), Gus Bilirakis (FL-12), Neal Dunn (FL-02), Morgan Griffith (VA-09), Brett Guthrie (KY-02), Larry Bucshon (IN-08), and Richard Hudson (NC-08) joined Mullin on this letter.

The full letter can be found here