Trump Expected to Officially Declare the Opioid Crisis a 'National Emergency'

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"President Trump's bipartisan opioid commission makes clear that this crisis demands a health-based response", said Smith.

The Christie administration also implemented new rules limiting the prescriptions of pain pills, which many experts have blamed in part for the heroin and opioid addiction crisis.

The congressman stressed that "without action, these trends will continue their risky trajectory".

Health and human services secretary Tom Price later seemed to suggest that the President may not go so far as he had suggested.

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With an emergency declaration, disaster funding might become available, and providers could be mobilized to areas with few resources to help people with an opioid addiction. "High-level traffickers and high-level cartel drug dealers go after them with the full force of the law, but individual users, they need help, they need treatment, they need support, and if they don't get it, they'll continue to use and continue to die".

Now 17 out of every 100,000 state residents are killed as a result of opioids, the congressman's office noted.

State legislators have thrown their weight behind efforts to crack down on opioid abuse in the Sunshine State.

There was speculation Trump would declare the emergency after a briefing on the national opioid epidemic Tuesday.

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Markey, who recently urged the White House to issue such a declaration, said the president's move will "elevate the opioid epidemic as the greatest public health crisis facing our country".

Trump stopped short of announcing how exactly his administration plans to tackle the problem-which, according to a preliminary report from the President's Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and Opioid Crisis, is now responsible for more fatalities than gun violence and vehicular accidents combined. The Milwaukee County Medical Examiner says we are on pace for more 400 overdose deaths this year, the majority opioids.

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Perhaps President Trump forgot what he said, too, or maybe the emergency declaration was already in the works.

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"The president certainly believes that we will treat it as an emergency-and it is an emergency", Price said.

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