WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the Senate is expected to pass a spending package that includes key health wins for Ohio that U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) helped secure, including funding to fight the addiction crisis, to help study ways to prevent gun violence and to reduce maternal and infant mortality. The spending package passed the House earlier this week and after it passes the Senate, will head to the President’s desk to be signed into law.

“Keeping Ohio families safe and healthy is one of the most fundamental roles of government,” said Brown. “The funding that Congress passed today represents an investment in our state – from funding to fight the addiction crisis to creating jobs at the NIOSH project in Cincinnati. I’m glad to see these initiatives pass with broad bipartisan support and I urge the President to sign them into law quickly.”

Specifically, Brown helped secure: 

  • $3.8 billion to address the ongoing addiction crisis, including: $1.5 billion to states to address the opioid epidemic and mental health; $476 million for opioid overdose surveillance and prevention at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC); $90 million to address the needs of children affected by the opioid crisis; and $100 million to help affected rural communities.
  • For the first time in decades, the bill includes $25 million for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to research gun violence. In 2017, gun violence killed nearly 40,000 people in the United States.
  • $53 million -- an increase of $3 million – for programs within the Health Resources and Services Administration and CDC for the initiative aimed at reducing the nation’s alarmingly high maternal mortality rate. More women in the U.S. die from pregnancy-related complications than in any other developed nation, and the maternal mortality rate rose by 26 percent from 2000 to 2014. This funding will help support improved surveillance and help expand programs that are proven to be successful at reducing maternal mortality.
  • $125.5 million for the Healthy Start program, a $3 million increase. Healthy Start aims to reduce the national infant mortality rate by identifying and supporting communities with infant mortality rates that are at least one and a half times the U.S. national average or increasing above the national average. Ohio is home to five Healthy Start grantees.

Brown also secured provisions within the spending package to increase funding for the Children’s Hospitals Graduate Medical Education Program and to protect funding for the NIOSH project in Cincinnati, funding to advance the firefighter cancer registry that Brown helped create, funding for vaccinations and funding to address the public health risk posed by the dramatic increase in e-cigarette use by minors.

Brown will continue leading efforts to ensure Ohioans have the resources and the investments they need to stay healthy and safe.