President Donald Trump on Thursday said he plans to declare the opioid crisis a national emergency. Instead, it rightly focused on proven steps that should be taken to reduce the death toll from what is a medical and health crisis, in terms of treatment for those who already are addicted to opioids and preventing new addictions by tightening the supply of these drugs, most of which are obtained with prescriptions.
Donald Trump spoke to pool reporters at his New Jersey golf club on Thursday about the semantics of "fire and fury", why his party's highest-ranking congressman is a disgrace, and the good old days of LSD.
The White House has been reluctant to say whether Trump is spending time golfing while he is away from Washington, but the President has been photographed playing throughout the week.
"I'm glad that he declared a national emergency", said Philadelphia's public health commissioner, Thomas Farley, noting that the declaration was the first recommendation in the presidential commission's interim report.
"Our citizens are dying".
Commissions, in ME and other states, cities like Bangor and nationally have come up with "wonderful ideas", Dr. Mark Publicker, an addiction specialist in Portland, told the BDN.
While there has been debate among addiction treatment specialists over what a national emergency declaration would achieve, a handful of states have found the move helpful. This is more insight into Trump's view of the presidency. His office did not immediately respond to a request seeking comment.
But Daniel Raymond of the Harm Reduction Coalition, an advocacy group, said Trump's words "need to be accompanied by actions".
Across the country, more than 100 Americans die every day from overdoses.
Trump held a briefing Tuesday on the crisis in Bedminster, vowing to "fight this deadly epidemic - and the United States will win".
"I know that physicians and other providers have oftentimes sensed that there is an incentive to provide narcotic medication and we need to do all that we can to make certain that, yes, people are provided appropriate narcotic medication when necessary, but no more than necessary", Price said. He later promised to help people who "are so seriously addicted".
Just a week ago, the PennLive/Patriot-News Editorial Board published only the second front-page editorial in this publication's history calling for a swift, strong and sure response to the nationwide opioid epidemic. At the street level, police, firefighters and paramedics now routinely carry naloxone (brand name Narcan), the anti-overdose drug that can yank an addict from the brink of death. Opioid use disorder is just like any other chronic disease - like diabetes, like hypertension - and needs to be treated in the same manner.
At Community Behavioral Health, the city agency that handles Medicaid claims for substance-abuse treatment, deputy chief medical officer Rose Julius said the decision was "a wonderful call - a real opportunity to mobilize any and all resources that can be made available".
More money also is needed for prevention, such as efforts offered by the Impact Coalition in Ohio County, he said.
"What this does is allows us to use additional resources - so additional funding, additional personnel", Dr. Cara Christ, director of the Arizona Department of Health Services, told All Things Considered host Audie Cornish.
Jenkins said he anticipates the actual declaration "at some point in the near future".
Dr. Arthur Reingold, a professor of epidemiology at the University of California-Berkeley, worked with the World Health Organization on helping stockpile vaccines during the H1N1 pandemic in 2009. "It takes money to get the beds up and running", Newton said.
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