"Nobody is safe from this epidemic that threatens young and old, rich and poor, urban and rural communities everybody is threatened", Mr. Trump said.
Alaska Chief Medical Officer Jay Butler told me its hard to say exactly how such a declaration could help his state without specifics from Trump, but predicted it would open the possibly for a faster stream of resources from the federal government to the state.
Trump has made it clear over the first six months of his presidency that the victims of this epidemic aren't almost as important to him as fighting the bad hombres he says are bringing drugs to the U.S. And less than two weeks into his presidency, Trump told Australian prime minister Malcolm Turnbull that New Hampshire was a "drug-infested den".
President Trump gets a briefing on the opioid crisis today from Health and Human Services Secretary, Tom Price. Roughly 30 percent of the 2 million people in treatment for an opioid addiction are on Medicaid, according to a report from the Kaiser Family Foundation.
During his presidential campaign, Trump repeatedly spoke about opioid addiction and its impact in the United States - particularly in rural, lower-income and working-class areas. "The president's goal is to make certain that we have a health-care system that works for patients".
"There's a recommendation on one hand and then it's a rebuffing of that recommendation and we would encourage the President and those in Congress to be encouraging the President that we need to have a very aggressive effort", Mayor Steve Williams said. Yes, that saga is over, for now.
Instead, the president during a short briefing in Bridgewater, N.J., raised the specter of pursuing a tougher law enforcement strategy to tackle a crisis that claimed 52,000 lives in 2015.
In May, Price visited Charleston to talk about the opioid epidemic with policymakers from both the state and federal levels along with representatives from several organizations. Trump cited his desire to accelerate the rate of federal drug prosecutions and suggested that sentencing guidelines also need to be strengthened.
"We urge the president to take these steps", Christie said.
"We agreed that you have to have aggressive law enforcement, but we also know that it's not a contradiction to have aggressive law enforcement but also having alternatives to incarceration". "We are cracking down hard on foreign criminal gangs that have brought illegal drugs, violence, awful bloodshed to peaceful neighborhoods all across our country". "As long as there has been and demand for drugs, there will be a supply". In an initial preliminary report issued last week, the commission focused on treatment, calling on Trump to make it easier for Medicaid to pay for treatment programs and to equip police officers with naloxone, a lifesaving anti-overdose medication. "The first and most urgent recommendation of this Commission is direct and completely within your control". Doing so "will immediately open treatment to thousands of Americans in existing facilities in all 50 states", writes the commission.
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