Four bills were approved by state lawmakers on Tuesday that will help to combat substance abuse issues in New York, working to provide a path for funding and to boost research efforts.
These measures come during concerns for rising substance abuse and addiction problems in New York more than a year into the crisis caused by the pandemic. Overdose deaths have risen over the last year not only in the state, but the country.
Senator Peter Hackham, a Democrat who sponsored these measures, explained that the bills with make sure treatment providers are not penalized for receiving federal funds during the pandemic and to push the state to compile useful data on overdoses. He also explained that residents entering nursing homes will be asked about their veteran status so they get the right kind of care and lake associations will get help in reducing contaminants.
The bills include a measure requiring any federal grant received or used by a substance use disorder treatment provided during the pandemic will not consider the money a source of revenue.
Another bill requires the State Department of Health to collect data on non-fatal overdoses.
One bill requires that all intake and admission forms in nursing homes collect information on the applicant’s veteran status. This is meant to help keep better track of whether veterans are receiving the benefits they’re entitled to.