The bipartisan Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA) 2.0 introduced in the U.S. Senate on Dec. 10 would increase funding levels for the Comprehensive Addiction & Recovery Act (CARA).
CARA became law in 2016 and funds evidence-based addiction education, treatment, and recovery programs. Congress approved $658 million in funding for CARA programs in fiscal year 2020.
CARA 2.0 increases funding to $765 million. It also introduced several policy changes.
Authorization levels include $300 million for the expansion of evidence-based medication-assisted treatment, $200 million to build a national infrastructure for recovery support services, $100 million to expand treatment for pregnant and postpartum women, and $50 million to provide quality treatment for addiction in correctional facilities and community reentry
Policy changes include mandating a three-day limit on initial opioid prescriptions for acute pain, removing the limit on the number of patients a physician can treat with buprenorphine and methadone, establishes a National Commission for Excellence in Post-Overdose Response to improve the quality and safety of substance use disorders and drug overdoses care, and research into nonopioid pain management alternatives.
U.S. Sens. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Rob Portman (R-OH), and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) introduced the bill.
Numerous addiction treatment, recovery, enforcement, and prevention stakeholders support the legislation.