IU Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health at IUPUI Founding Dean Paul Halverson will testify in Washington, D.C. Tuesday. He will speak before the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Energy and Commerce on the public health impact of prescription opioid and heroin abuse.
"I am honored to be asked to testify before the House Committee on Energy and Commerce and to have the opportunity to help shed light on an issue that is impacting so many people," Halverson said. "The increase in deaths due to overdoses of pain medication and heroin use is a national problem, one that has hit Indiana particularly hard. Although mortality rates are up in many states, Indiana is one of only four states where the rate quadrupled over the past 14 years. The IU Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health is dedicated to helping improve health for people in Indiana and beyond, and informing public health policy is one way we can make a meaningful and lasting difference."
The committee is currently considering new legislation sponsored by Indiana Rep. Susan Brooks that aims to address prescription opioid abuse and heroin use.
IUPUI says Halverson’s testimony will address why addiction is a public health issue, not just a problem for the individual who is addicted. The hearing is scheduled for 4:00 p.m.