The government wants to fight the alarming epidemic of heroin and prescription opioid abuse with $1.1 billion in funding.
The Obama administration will ask for the money in a new budget that would increase the amount from the $400 million already budgeted. If you need alcohol rehab or drug treatment in Wilmington NC call Legacy Freedom. We can help!
Fighting Opiate Addiction
More people die from drug overdoses than car accidents. New statistics show that of the fatalities, heroin and opioid pills were responsible for more than 28,000 of them.
The White House recognizes that heroin and prescription drug abuse has taken a toll on American families. They also note that resources have been tapped when it comes to how law enforcement is able to handle the epidemic.
The director of the National Drug Control Policy, Michael Botticelli, said of the announcement, “The president has made clear that addressing this opioid epidemic is a priority for him, and this budget reflects this.”
He goes on to add that the request for more funding shows how urgent it is that we recognize the issue and take action.
The new proposal would allow states to expand access to and lower the costs of treatment. States with higher risk factors would receive more money to spend on their initiatives, such as expanding access to medication-assisted treatment for addiction. With these cooperative agreements in place, they could make it more affordable for people to get treatment. It would also improve access to naloxone, which is used in medical emergencies to reverse the effects of an opioid overdose.
Funds would also be earmarked for support programs by law enforcement to educate the public about the dangers of opioids and what to do in emergencies involving an overdose.
Senators from individual states have also called on Congress to get funds to help fight the opioid epidemic. Maine and New Hampshire are asking for $600 million in emergency funding so they can increase spending on state and local drug prevention initiatives and law enforcement programs.
The National Health Services Corps would receive $50 million to expand their treatment providers in areas that need it most. Part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), the organization provides health care services in underserved communities through loan repayment or scholarships.
DHHS secretary Sylvia Burwell said, “Our hope is to get the funding and get this moving as quickly as possible to the states.”
Another $30 million would be used to study the effectiveness of treatment programs that use medication to help patients overcome addiction.
In a statement about the proposed budget, the White House said, “(The proposal) will not only expand access to help people start treatment, but help them successfully complete it and sustain their recovery. It will increase education, prevention, drug monitoring programs, and law enforcement efforts to keep illegal drugs out of our communities.”
If approved, the money would available for the 2017 fiscal year.
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