Trump Promised To ‘Liberate’ Americans From Opioid Crisis. But States Say Little Has Been Done.
The public health emergency President Donald Trump declared is set to expire later this month, and public health officials in the states are frustrated that there were more "thoughts and prayers" and than money to back it up. Meanwhile, Trump signs legislation aimed at tackling the epidemic, the Cherokee Nation's lawsuit against opioid makers is dealt a blow, Ohio issues new guidelines on painkillers and work-related back injuries, and more.
'Nothing Is Actually Being Done': Trump's Opioid Emergency Order Disappoints
President Donald Trump in October promised to "liberate" Americans from the "scourge of addiction," officially declaring a 90-day public health emergency that would urgently mobilize the federal government to tackle the opioid epidemic. That declaration runs out on Jan. 23, and beyond drawing more attention to the crisis, virtually nothing of consequence has been done. (Ehley, 1/11)
The Associated Press:
Trump Signs Bill To Improve Opioid Screening Technology
President Donald Trump signed legislation Wednesday aimed at giving Customs and Border Protection agents additional screening devices and other tools to stop the flow of illicit drugs. Speaking at a surprise bill signing ceremony flanked by members of Congress from both parties in the Oval Office, Trump described the bill as a "significant step forward" in the fight against powerful opioids such as fentanyl, which he called "our new big scourge." (1/10)
Trump Signs Bipartisan Bill To Combat Synthetic Opioids
President Trump signed a bipartisan bill Wednesday aimed at stopping powerful synthetic opioids from coming into the country illegally. A group of Republican and Democratic lawmakers attended the bill signing, a rare showing of bipartisanship with members of both parties seeking to show their support for tackling the issue. (Roubein, 1/10)
Judge Deals Setback To Cherokee Nation Lawsuit Over Opioids
A federal judge in Oklahoma has dealt a blow to a Cherokee Nation lawsuit seeking to stop the flow of addictive opioid painkillers in its territory by issuing a preliminary injunction to prevent the case from being heard in tribal court. In a decision late Tuesday, U.S. District Judge Terence Kern ruled the tribal court lacked jurisdiction because the lawsuit involving six wholesale drug distributors and pharmacy operators does not directly concern tribal self-government. (Krehbiel-Burton, 1/10)
The Associated Press:
Ohio Imposes Strict Rule On Workers' Back Surgery, Opioids
Ohio residents with work-related back injuries in most cases must try remedies like rest, physical therapy and chiropractic care before turning to spinal fusion surgery and prescription painkillers under a groundbreaking new guideline that is partly meant to reduce the overprescribing of opioids but isn't sitting well with everyone. (Carr Smyth, 1/10)
Opioid Epidemic Could Be Stressing Foster-Care System, Study Says
A new study shows that the increase in opioid prescription rates in Florida may have had a role in the higher rate of kids being removed from their homes, putting more stress on the state’s foster care system and highlighting the shortage of foster parents. ...The study doesn’t directly link the rate of opioid prescriptions and kids’ removal to foster care, but its authors think it is the first to use data to show a potential correlation. (Miller, 1/10)