Senators unanimously pass bipartisan bill to combat opioid crisis in rural communities

A member of the Capitol police walks past the US Capitol in Washington, DC, on February 9, 2021 before the start of former US president Donald Trump's second Senate impeachment trial. - The US Senate gavels in Tuesday on Donald Trump's historic second impeachment trial, with his defense team decrying it as a "brazen political act" of retribution and Democratic prosecutors arguing that the ex-president wilfully incited a violent insurrection. The House of Representatives impeached him last month over his role in the deadly January 6 siege of the US Capitol by a pro-Trump mob, and his trial -- the first of a former president -- will feature the Senate's 100 members sitting as jurors.Trump's legal team Monday denounced the case as unconstitutional, calling it "absurd" to hold the former president responsible for the violence. (Photo by Nicholas Kamm / AFP) (Photo by NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP via Getty Images)

A member of the Capitol Police walks past the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. (Photo by NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP via Getty Images)

UPDATED 5:34 PM PT – Thursday, December 9, 2021

The Senate passed a bipartisan bill to combat the opioid crisis in rural communities.

On Wednesday, the Senate approved the “Rural Opioid Abuse Prevention Act” by unanimous consent. The legislation, introduced by Sens. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Jon Ossoff (D-Ga.) back in September, increases resources for rural communities to respond to and combat the crisis.

“With today’s passage of my bipartisan bill to reduce opioid addiction, overdoses, and deaths, the Senate proved Democrats and Republicans can still work together to get things done,” said Ossoff after the bill was passed.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 75,000 people died of opioid overdoses between April of 2020 and April of this year. This showed a 35 percent increase in opioid overdose deaths from the previous year.

The bill is now headed to the House for the lower chamber’s consideration.

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