In a call with leaders in the field, the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) recently released its priorities for the upcoming year. NAATP has a long history of engagement with ONDCP and we congratulate the agency on the establishment of these priorities.
We appreciate especially that “expanding access to evidence-based treatment” is the number one priority. ONDCP goes on to specifically mention the need to fully enforce the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity law (Parity). Under this priority, ONDCP states that enforcement is “essential to integrating treatment for substance use disorder into mainstream health care and improving quality of care.”
This stance by the ONDCP clearly aligns with NAATP public policy priorities. ONDCP further demonstrates its commitment to the Parity goal in announcing the intention to establish a Parity working group. It is noted that, when fully enforced, Parity will help eliminate discriminatory barriers to mental health and substance use disorder services, which is another NAATP priority.
The complete list of ONDCP priorities:
- Expanding access to evidence-based treatment
- Advancing racial equity in our approach to drug policy
- Enhancing evidence-based harm reduction efforts
- Supporting evidence-based prevention efforts to reduce youth substance use
- Reducing the supply of illicit substances
- Advancing recovery-ready workplaces and expanding the addiction workforce
- Expanding access to recovery support services
The 2021 ONDCP plan can be found here: The Biden-Harris Administration’s Statement of Drug Policy Priorities for Year One
NAATP will continue to work with ONDCP, SAMHSA, and the Biden Administration as they implement their priorities to improve access to quality, equitable substance use disorder care.