Governor Hassan Signs Bipartisan Bill Strengthening Drug and Alcohol Education

Press Release

Date: June 21, 2016
Location: Concord, NH

In a ceremony at the State House today, Governor Maggie Hassan signed three more bipartisan bills aimed at strengthening the state's comprehensive approach to combat the heroin and opioid crisis and help save lives.

Today, the Governor signed Senate Bill 369, requiring public schools to include drug and alcohol education as part of their health education curriculum, and she ceremonially signed two other bills that she signed earlier this month: Senate Bill 532, limiting prior authorizations for inpatient substance misuse treatment services, and House Bill 1423, requiring the boards governing all prescribers to adopt updated, permanent rules on prescribing opioids.

"As we work to stem -- and reverse - the tide of the heroin and opioid epidemic and help save lives, we must do everything that we can to help prevent addiction in the first place," Governor Hassan said. "This begins with educating our young people about the dangers of substance abuse and helping them understand the devastating effects it has on our families, our communities and our state. Senate Bill 369 builds on our work with local school districts on substance misuse prevention, requiring drug and alcohol education as part of the overall health curriculum, and I am glad to sign this bipartisan bill to give educators an additional tool in the fight against addiction."

To help stem - and reverse - the tide of the heroin and opioid epidemic in New Hampshire, Governor Hassan put forward a comprehensive proposal last fall to support law enforcement and strengthen prevention, treatment and recovery across the State. Governor Hassan has now signed numerous components of that comprehensive legislation. So far this year, the Governor has signed bipartisan legislation cracking down on fentanyl, limiting prior authorization requirements for treatment, making improvements to New Hampshire's prescription drug monitoring program, requiring all prescribing boards to update prescribing rules for opioids and establishing a statewide drug court program.

The Governor also intends to sign bipartisan measures providing an additional $5 million for prevention, treatment and recovery programs as well as supportive housing and upgrading the technology for the prescription drug monitoring program when they reach her desk.

In addition, the Governor fought to reauthorize the bipartisan New Hampshire Health Protection Program, which has provided substance misuse and behavioral health services to thousands of Granite Staters, and she has revised licensing requirements to make it easier for providers to open treatment facilities, worked to increase the safe and effective use of Narcan, and launched a statewide substance misuse hotline to help connect individuals with resources 24 hours a day, seven days a week. She has also signed bipartisan bills allowing drug take-back programs at pharmacies, simplifying the licensing process for alcohol and drug abuse counselors who move to New Hampshire.