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The SB 319 Act in Ohio and the Problems it can Cause

The sands of time stop for no mortal living creature and oh what a time it is to be living right now. We are given such short lives and thrown limitless options on how to pass the hours on the clock. The hours turn to days, the days to weeks, weeks to months, and months to years. Before one knows it, they’ve lived this measurable amount of time and feel they’re starting to kind of get the hang of things. Then there are unexpected curve balls launched in your direction or outside influences that butterfly effect some major decisions in your life. Sometimes, though, life just isn’t as simple or as cynical as that. Everybody on this planet has their inner demons that they are constantly battling. We, as in human beings, live in a world where there is so much temptation. So much that is forbidden, yet somehow we have to find a balance with what is acceptable and what is not. The world is moving ever so quickly and the evolution of humanity is occurring right in front of our eyes. Technology is evolving, Mother Nature is changing, and we have addicts and alcoholics springing up every day out of nowhere. Many of us find ourselves in one way or another facing the bottle or a needle even and wonder what happened. Was it the appeal? Was it insecurities and deeper rooted issues? Was it the accessibility? Well for most, all are usually true to some extent, but it’s the latter of the questions that deserves a little focus. The easy access of heroin and other opiates on the street has caused a double-edged sword of a law to be passed called the SB 319 act. This same act that will be of such great help to some addicts and alcoholics will in the end, be detrimental to others. The butterfly effect gets worse.

Good Intentions, Bad Outcomes

The convenience that rides along with finding opiates of some form or fashion in Ohio is sickening. There is no need of the “X” to mark the spot on the treasure map because the amount of crime and corruption involving these controlled substances is building. Bodies are dropping left and right from opioid overdoses and so a senate bill was passed in Ohio as a preemptive attempt to stop people’s candles from burning out too early. The idea behind the bill was seemingly simple at first: make prescription opioids harder to obtain and create fewer overdoses. This was done by making new state laws that would prohibit certain treatment center and clinics from being able to administer pain medication so easily. Of course, this idea sounds flawless at first, but there is another side to every coin tossed into the air. Unfortunately, passing this bill creates other dilemmas in areas that are intended to help the same people that are struggling with chemical dependency. One of the main problematic instances to occur has to do with Suboxone maintenance.


Suboxone is a drug with similar properties to that of Subutex and Narcan in which case, it is kind of meant to reverse what the painkillers and heroin are doing. Suboxone is technically a synthetic opioid and is treated as a controlled substance. So when bills like SB 319 are passed, it’s putting restrictions on some of the helpful things as well. Many ex-heroin junkies like myself and other addicts in recovery have leaned on Suboxone in times of desperation. Now granted, this Naloxone infused medication can be abused very easily. There is no promotion of Suboxone at all right here as a solution. For true addicts and alcoholics, getting clean and entering recovery are the only things we can do to save ourselves from the grasp of this deadly disease. The 12 steps have proven time and time again to be the best thing one can do for themselves to rid the misery that opiates deliver. Getting out of the hole the chemicals bring is a whole other story, though. Suboxone has been used for years as a way to wean heavily dependent addicts off of opiates and slowly back to normality. It is thought of to be almost like a milder form of Methadone, completely different substances, but used primarily for the same purpose.

With the SB 319 act placing these restrictions on the medical world, it’s acting as a catalyst for the deaths of some. There are individuals and patients all over Ohio that are on specific treatment plans of titrating off Suboxone. People that will be interrupting their progress and disturbing the balance they are trying to recreate into their lives. With these limitations will come dirty doctors being exposed and losing their practices. There will be institutions and medical clinics that will lose their licensure and have no other choice but to shut down. To add it all up, there will be way fewer options for some. This can be a simple matter of life and death to us addicts and alcoholics. The reality of the matter is that there will always be illegal and legal opiates on the streets and no amount of new laws or bills will change that. Take prohibition for example. Alcohol was outlawed but didn’t stop the citizens from obtaining what they wanted; they just looked for ways around it. The same principle applies in that yes, it was a good idea to put confines on the output of these substances, but it will never tarnish them for good. That being kept in mind, creating a whole other problem by applying half a solution is not what the state of Ohio is in need of. An awakening is needed, but unfortunately, it will only be found by those who seek it.

Become Informed- Take Action

This ferocious monster of a disease will take anybody it can get. Some are able to live the party lifestyle and at the end of the day walk away from it all and still maintain their sanity. For many of us, this isn’t even close to the case. Our lives revolve around the idea of consuming substances and we struggle to find the good in situations we continuously delve into. There is hope though and struggling doesn’t have to be the guarantee. If you or a loved one has been struggling with getting a firm grasp on sobriety and need a solution, please call 1-800-481-8457 or visit oarcstaging.wpengine.com. Our teams of specialists are waiting by to help figure out what options are best for sending your life in a comfortable direction that you can proudly stand behind.

One response to “The SB 319 Act in Ohio and the Problems it can Cause

  • Jim Bean MD

    7 years ago

    Thanks for this. I’m a physician and treat Opiate Dependence with Buprenorphine and Vivitrol. The ASAM and OSAM are both interested in doing something about this bill. It seems to be our government’s way trying to respond to a few people not doing the proper things in treatment and then put a burden on everyone. They want to “stop diversion”. It also appears to me that it pushes people into Methadone programs and away from Buprenorphine treatment. My practice is geared to the person who works full time, day time job, mothers with young children, below school age, etc. I see patients after 5pm and they can see counselors on their insurance and at their convenience. They pay for their treatment in my office but I get the Meds prior authed for them. I have patients that eventually wean off and do well. They know if a problem they can call to be seen again.

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