May 26, 2023
US House Passes Illicit Fentanyl Scheduling Bill – Legislation Does Not Impact Legal Medical-Use Fentanyl
On Thursday, May 25, the U.S. House of Representatives voted on a bipartisan basis to pass H.R. 467
, the Halt All Lethal Trafficking of (HALT) Fentanyl Act, legislation that would permanently place fentanyl analogues or fentanyl-related substances (described as “any substance that is structurally related to fentanyl by 1 or more modifications”) as a Schedule 1 controlled substance. The HALT Act does not target the use of medical fentanyl in the operating room.
ASA worked closely with Rep. Brett Guthrie (R-KY-02), Chair of the Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee, and members of House leadership to ensure that the HALT Act does not interrupt the supply of medical fentanyl in operating rooms. Rep. Guthrie has made statements for the Congressional record to reaffirm Congress’s intent to maintain the supply of medical fentanyl in surgery. Earlier this week, members of the House Doctors’ Caucus, including ASA member Rep. Andy Harris, MD (R-MD-01) hosted a press conference on the importance of the legislation and differentiated between the need for medical-use fentanyl and illicit fentanyl. The HALT Act does not target medical-use fentanyl which is a Schedule II drug.
ASA will monitor the advancement of this legislation as it moves to the Senate.