We have a critical call to action to pass an important piece of legislation, SB 34, the Opioid Impact Fee bill.
This is truly a battle of the little citizen, David vs. Goliath with their huge war chest of money.
Here are the “cliff notes” of the legislation. This act creates what we have been referring to as a “Stewardship Fund” through a small fee paid by pharmaceutical manufacturers, not the consumer. The fee is 1 penny per milligram for a name brand prescription opioid or 1⁄4 of a penny per milligram for a prescription opioid that is a generic. This fee will not apply to prescription opioids administered in hospitals, provided directly to patients by hospice, or dispensed by veterinarians. There is an expiration, a “sunset date” of 5 years, for this law in the event that it creates unintended negative consequences. There has been expert testimony that this will cause little increase in pricing to the consumer as all drug prices are set nationally, not on what Delaware does. Co-pays will not go up.
atTAcK addiction has been trying to get this passed since 2015. Last year Sen. Stephanie Hansen (D) became the legislative champion for this bill. This legislation is co-sponsored by Sen. Anthony Delcollo (R) in the Senate and Reps. David Bentz (D) and Kevin Hensley (R) in the House. It is a bipartisan effort to hold the opioid manufacturers accountable for the public health addiction crisis that they have in large part created.
The bill was passed overwhelmingly by the Senate and soon will go to a vote in the House. The opioid manufacturers are spending vast sums of money to defeat this bill. They are doing so by spreading false information about the consequences of this bill, just as they did by stating opioids weren’t addictive. You may have seen some of their ads on social media.
We need you to do several things.
Contact all members of the House
- Let them know you are a registered voter
- Let them know you are a constituent.
- Put your address under your signature.
- Be respectful, civil, and do not threaten (not to vote for them, etc.)
- Ask five friends to do the same.
We’ve included some talking points. You don’t have to use all of them.
We need for you to do this immediately, before the weekend is out.