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August 11, 2017

8-11-2017 Trump (finally) declared the opioid crisis a national emergency Nuggets…..(Vox)

  • After signaling that he would not declare the nation’s opioid crisis a national emergency, President Trump today reversed course, promising to dedicate more time and money to the drug epidemic. [NBC News / Ali Vitali and Corky Siemaszko]
  • The announcement comes almost two weeks after Trump’s presidential commission on opioids released a report of recommendations, chief among them declaring a national emergency. [NYT / Abby Goodnough]
  • Trump had been teasing a “major announcement” on the opioid crisis ever since, first at an event in West Virginia and then again at his vacation home in New Jersey. [Donald Trump via Twitter]
  • Then a few days ago, Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price said the president wasn’t planning to declare it an emergency, reasoning that the opioid crisis had been going on for a long time and wasn’t a short-term national emergency like Zika or a natural disaster. [Vox / German Lopez]
  • Declaring a national emergency could, in theory, get more money from national funds dedicated to emergency relief and put it toward the drug crisis, especially in states hardest hit by addiction. [Vox / German Lopez]
  • Trump’s remarks today were vague, but he promised to dedicate more time, money, and resources to fighting the opioid crisis. As of yet, it’s not clear what exactly might change now that the declaration has been issued. [Stat / Andrew Joseph]
  • Experts agree that while the declaration is a good first step, it’s going to take a lot to really put a dent in an epidemic that killed more than 50,000 people in 2016 alone. [NYT / Josh Katz]

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