The Republican health care plan, which would roll back the Affordable Care Act and reduce or terminate health coverage for millions of Americans, will deepen the nation’s opioid crisis, addiction experts tell the Los Angeles Times . “It would essentially write off a generation,” said Dr. Shawn Ryan, President of BrightView Health, a network of drug treatment clinics in Cincinnati. “It would be catastrophic.” The House health care plan passed in April cut more than $800 billion in federal aid to state Medicaid programs, which cover many Americans with substance use disorders. The Senate plan also includes major Medicaid cutbacks, the article notes. The White House budget calls for an additional $600 billion in Medicaid cuts over the next decade.
TRICARE, which provides health coverage for active duty and retired service members, their families, and survivors, will expand treatment for substance abuse and mental health care. Almost 9.4 million people are covered under the program. TRICARE, which is run by the Department of Defense, will expand coverage of substance abuse treatment to include intensive outpatient programs for addiction and opioid use disorder. There will no longer be inpatient day limits for mental health care. Previously, adults were only covered for 30 days in inpatient mental health facilities. Children were covered for 45 days.