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LETTER: Opioid epidemic hurts manufacturers

May 25, 2018

The Indiana Manufacturers Association was founded in 1901 to advocate policies that will help Indiana’s largest economic and employment sector, manufacturing. The biggest issue impacting Indiana manufacturers is the lack of available workers.

It is evident that the opioid epidemic is pushing a record number of Hoosiers to the sidelines of society and out of the workforce. One in four job applicants are failing drug tests, which means a large population of people are unable to work—leaving employers scrambling to fill positions needed to keep their businesses running. A recent study published by the Indiana Business Review estimates the gross state product loss to Indiana from opiates misuse is $1.5 billion per year.

A lot has been done here to fight this opioid epidemic and additional efforts are underway. Recently, Sen. Todd Young helped to advance bipartisan legislation to establish certified Comprehensive Opioid Recovery Centers in the areas most affected by this public health crisis. The House also supported legislation for the centers, which will ensure that patients are able to access all three FDA-approved treatments of opioid dependence in one provider setting. A full range of addiction services, including detoxification, relapse prevention and counseling, will also be provided at CORCs.

This means that critical support will be more accessible to help people regain their health and maintain stable employment.

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Brian Burton
Indiana Manufacturers Association

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