September 05, 2019

SAMHSA Releases Proposed Regulatory Changes for Substance Abuse Disorder Records

On August 26, 2019, HHS and SAMHSA released two Notices of Proposed Rulemaking (“NPRM”), proposing changes to the Confidentiality of Substance Use Disorder (SUD) Patient Records at 42 CFR Part 2 (Part 2). The proposed rule would not alter the basic framework for confidentiality protection of SUD patient records created by federally funded treatment programs. The proposed changes intend to ease the sharing of SUD records in response to the opioid epidemic. The first NPRM makes changes to the provisions of Part 2, while the second NPRM proposes corrected  language for the 2017 Part 2 Final Rule. SAMHSA stated that an erroneous addition in the 2017 Final Rule is hampering law enforcement efforts to address the opioid crisis. SAMHSA also published a fact sheet outlining the proposed changes.