The New Hampshire Senate
Republican Majority Office
Legislation tackles NH addiction epidemic
Concord, NH – The New Hampshire Senate today unanimously approved a bill sponsored by Sen. Andy Sanborn (R-Bedford) to address New Hampshire’s growing problem of painkiller addiction. SB 45 would require patients seeking care under the state’s Workers Compensation program to enter into an Opioid Treatment Agreement with their medical provider. The legislation is modeled on successful efforts in several states to help patients avoid addiction to the powerful painkillers they need to treat on the job injuries.
“I was shocked to learn how much of New Hampshire’s Workers Compensation program goes just to opioids,” Sanborn said. “But aside from the cost to taxpayers and businesses, getting hooked on painkillers carries a tremendous cost to patients. This bill is just one way the New Hampshire Legislature is addressing our state’s rising rash of addiction and overdoses.”
SB 45 would require doctors and patients to agree to a treatment plan to lower the risk of addiction and misuse of painkillers. The agreement is based on a model suggested by the New Hampshire Medical Society, which testified in favor of the bill, along with representatives of New Hampshire employers and insurance companies.
“By ensuring that patients have informed consent before taking potentially addictive painkillers, and a plan to reduce that risk, we’re going to save lives,” Sanborn added. “I’d like to thank my Senate colleagues for supporting this initiative.”