5 things to know about the newly signed opioid treatment law

President Barack Obama signed the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act bill into law Friday by, according to a Reuters report.

Here are five things to know about the legislation.

1. The measure, approved by the House of Representatives and the Senate earlier this month, pledges to expand alcohol and drug prevention education, increase collaboration with law enforcement and criminal justice systems and create more disposal and turn-in sites for unwanted prescription medications. It also pledges greater efforts to protect drug-dependent newborns and assist their parents, according to the report.

2. Under the new law, the federal government and every state must follow a 2003 law that called on states to require hospitals and social services to report, track and assist drug-dependent newborns and their families, according to Reuters.

3. Efforts to enforce the 2003 law follows a Reuters investigation that found that no more than nine states were following that law's requirement.

4. The new law pledges a non-punitive approach that includes "safe care plans" aimed at keeping newborns at home with their parents, who will receive additional help, according to the report.

5. Republican lawmakers have said funding for the programs the bill authorizes would be addressed in the appropriations process later in 2016, according to The New York Times.


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