News & Opinions

Addiction policy and law in America - politics - drugs and alcohol policy
March 27, 2018  |  Policy Update

What is in the New 2018 Omnibus Spending Bill?

March 2018 | A BREAKDOWN OF APPROPRIATIONS

The Senate successfully passed (65 to 32) a $1.3 trillion omnibus spending bill, after the House passed the bill (256 to 167) on Thursday.

While there was some uncertainty initially about whether President Donald Trump would sign the bill, after a tweet saying he was considering a veto, the bill was signed into law, avoiding a government shutdown. The bill provides $177.1 billion in discretionary appropriations for health, education, and labor agencies for the 2018 fiscal year. This is $16 billion more than in fiscal year 2017. *Note: Fiscal year (FY) 2018 goes from October 1, 2017 to September 30, 2018.

The omnibus spending bill allocates roughly $4.65 billion to addressing the opioid epidemic across the federal government — about three-quarters of that comes from the Labor-HHS section – about $3 billion of that amount is “new” money consistent with the budget agreement reached last month. Overall, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is receiving $78 billion in budget authority, an increase of $10 billion from FY17.

 

Summary of FY18 Omnibus Spending Bill

 

(NIH) National Institutes of Health

The omnibus provides $37.084 billion for NIH, including the full $496 million from the 21st Century Cures Act Innovation Account, a $3 billion increase over the 2017 level.  Within NIH, the bill includes $500 million split evenly between the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) and the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) for research related to opioid addiction, development of opioid alternatives, pain management, and addiction treatment.

 

INCLUDED PROGRAMS OF INTEREST:

                                                                            

INCLUDED NIH POLICY DIRECTIVES:

 

(SAMHSA) Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration

The bill funds SAMHSA at $5 billion – $1.3 billion above the FY17 level. The legislation maintains a prohibition on federal funds for the purchase of syringes or sterile needles, but allows communities with rapid increases in cases of HIV and Hepatitis to access federal funds for other activities, including substance-use counseling and treatment referrals.

The omnibus includes $1 billion in new State Opioid Response grants under SAMHSA; within these funds, there is a 15% set-aside for states with the highest mortality rates related to opioid use disorders and a $50 million set-aside for Indian tribes and tribal organizations. These funds are in addition to the $500 million for FY 18 from the 21st Century Cures Act.

 

INCLUDED PROGRAMS OF INTEREST:

 

(HRSA) Health Resources Services Administration

 

(CDC) Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The omnibus includes $7.2 billion in discretionary budget authority for CDC, or about a $1.1 billion increase over FY17. It also gives CDC $475 million for prescription overdose prevention activities — an increase of $350 million to help fight the opioid epidemic, with $10 million of those funds dedicated to an opioid misuse awareness campaign.

 

OTHER HEALTH POLICY PROVISIONS INCLUDED IN SPENDING BILL

 

 

 

This Policy Exclusive was provided by Holly Strain & Carol McDaid of Capitol Decisions

Sign Up for the Bulletin

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.