President Trump's Opioid Declaration Leaves Ohio Advocates Underwhelmed
29 October, 2017, 02:45 | Author: Keith Rowe
"I have spoken to the president in depth about this epidemic and the devastating impact it is having on our communities in OH and around the country, and I know he is committed to addressing it in a comprehensive way", said a statement from Portman, who urged Congress to provide more resources to fight the epidemic.
In an address at the White House, Trump said the growing epidemic spares "no part" of the country, promising his administration will spend "lots of money" to find non-addictive painkiller, Xinhua news agency reported. HIV/AIDS health funding would also be prioritised for those who need substance abuse treatment, officials said. He shared the story of his brother Fred, who he said had struggled with alcohol addiction throughout his life and implored Trump never to take a drink - advice the president said he had heeded. But if nothing else, the announcement could serve as a reminder to people that the deadly problem is not going away, he said.
The reach of the crisis has pressured Trump to act, but Thursday's move may still frustrate public health officials and others who had urged a quicker and more forceful response.
Public health and addiction experts say a multi-pronged approach is needed immediately - a national prevention strategy, greater access to substance abuse treatment and enough money for communities to stock up on naloxone, an increasingly costly drug that can reverse life-threatening overdoses.
"There is plenty of work ahead", Harris added, "and the emergency declaration adds further urgency to this epidemic". Two other Granite State leaders, Republican Gov. Chris Sununu and Democratic Sen. The distinction matters, because had the president followed through on his August remarks, Federal Emergency Management Agency funds could have been used immediately in responding to the crisis, including improving first-responder care for opioid overdoses.
Portman said, "There is no doubt that this heroin and prescription drug epidemic is a national crisis, and it's getting worse, not better". Edward J. Markey, D-Mass.
"We want them to get help that they need", said President Trump. "Until those treatments are easier to access than heroin or fentanyl, overdose deaths will remain at record-high levels".
Rep. Chellie Pingree of ME, D-1st District, said she didn't see enough specifics from the president Thursday and echoed concerns about adequate funding. And the numbers have been climbing steadily for years: More than 4,000 were in state-funded treatment for opioid abuse in 2013 - up from 399 in 2000.
- The Department of Labor will make Dislocated Worker Grants available to those with opioid addictions and others who were dislocated by this health crisis or who have had trouble finding work due to their addiction.
Administration officials argued that a national emergency declaration was not necessary or helpful in the case of the opioid crisis, and that the powers associated with a public health emergency were better suited to address the issue.
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