Colorado’s Opioid Crisis: A Web of Policy Solutions

At least one bill to address opioid crisis has backing of other health care policy

The Colorado House of Representatives’ Public Health Care and Human Services Committee gave the go-ahead Tuesday for three bills designed to address gaps in access to treatment to help solve Colorado’s opioid crisis.

The committee sent forward House Bills 1003, 1007 and 1136 with bipartisan support. HB 1136 expands in-patient and residential treatment to Medicaid programs. And according to some testimony for the bill, it might have significant policy backing from a few different health care laws.

Bethany Pray, a health care attorney at the Colorado Center on Law and Policy, testified in favor of House Bills 1007 and 1136. She spoke about both the policy and cost-saving benefits of expanding residential and inpatient treatment for Medicaid beneficiaries.

Pray explained in her testimony that the proposal made by HB 1136 seeks a waiver of a federal Medicaid rule prohibiting funding of behavioral care provided to most patients in residential treatment centers with more than 16 beds.

To read this story and other complete articles featured in the March 19, 2017 print edition of Law Week Colorado, copies are available for purchase online