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On Wednesday, 24th of October 2018, Us President Donald Trump signed legislation to counter the spread of opioid use in America.
The report given by Center for Disease Control and Prevention stated that more than 48000 American lives were lost in 2017 because of overdosing of opioids and Trump had declared it a public health emergency. The legislative and executive branch have since then tried to launch appropriate response towards the problem.
Before signing the bill, Trump pledged to join hands with Americans to eliminate the crisis or create a very wide dent.
The bill is known as the SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act, and it went almost unchallenged by the congress. It directed federal agencies and states to increase the access to addiction treatment. The bill also contained interventions that are meant to mitigate the crisis, like training to be offered to law enforcement to cautiously intercept shipment at US border, especially fentanyl which is very addictive and among the deadliest.
A source also revealed to NBC News that the administration intended to set aside enough funds for the discovery of a non-addictive painkiller.
In as much as the bill was applauded by many democrats, some of them still feel that it won’t be very effective if the attempt by the Republicans to cut funds for Medicare and Medicaid succeeds. Rep. Frank Pallone of New Jersey was among those who did not think the bill would solve anything.
“It is indigenous at best to promise to relief people struggling with opioid addiction while also attempting to cut funding for Medicaid and eliminate protections for people with pre-existing conditions, which include opioid use disorder,” the ranking Democrat commented.
Interestingly, the bill seems to be also a political move especially for those eyeing political seats in 2020. Interested candidates of the 2020 elections have been battling to be the first to offer the best solution to the crisis.
The bill has not only been welcomed by the politicians but also by health experts who have coincided with the bills intent to curb the epidemic. Just like the lawmakers, they consider the legislation as the first step to combating the high loss of lives to opioids overdose.
However, for the problem to be completely dealt with, the root has to be determined and addressed accordingly, therefore the House has an ongoing investigation on the role of opioid distributers in the crisis.