Latest Morning Briefing Stories

House Lawmakers To Begin Big Push On Tackling Opioid Crisis With Hearings Starting Next Week

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The policies that lawmakers will examine include updating scheduling guidelines to help clamp down on synthetic opioids, letting hospice workers dispose of unused drugs, expanding access to behavioral health telemedicine in rural areas, and more. Meanwhile, a news study finds some states simply don’t have enough doctors to properly address the epidemic.

Trump Sees Mental Institutions For Troubled Youth As Solution To Shootings. Experts Say Idea Is ‘Ridiculous.’

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“Most of these shooters are angry, antisocial individuals you cannot spot in advance, and even if you could, you don’t have the right to institutionalize them.” said Dr. Michael Stone, a forensic psychiatrist at Columbia University. Meanwhile, mental health experts are disturbed by the derisive language President Donald Trump has been using. Media outlets also take a look at the gun research and laws that might come from the shooting.

Raw Emotion Overshadows Policy In Trump’s Listening Session With Families, Survivors Of School Shootings

KHN Morning Briefing

President Donald Trump hosted a group of families and survivors affected by mass shootings to try to brainstorm a way forward. The president floated several ideas, but came back to background checks, mental health laws and arming teachers. Meanwhile, in Florida, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) participated in a town-hall like event to talk about gun control and safety laws. He earned both cheers and jeers for his positions.

Some Gun Control Measures ‘On The Table’ For Trump Following Florida Shooting

KHN Morning Briefing

President Donald Trump has directed the Justice Department to issue regulations banning so-called bump stocks, which convert semiautomatic guns into automatic weapons. But people familiar with the conversations say he is mulling going further — and perhaps putting himself at odds with the NRA. Meanwhile, students are still reeling from the psychological toll of the mass shooting.

Politicians Talk Link Between Mental Health, Gun Violence. But What Are The Facts?

KHN Morning Briefing

The New York Times fact checks politicians’ rhetoric about mass shootings and mental health. And advocates are voicing frustrations over the misconception that the two are always connected. “The vast majority of gun violence is not attributable to mental illness,” said Dr. Louis Kraus, forensic psychiatry chief at Chicago’s Rush University Medical College.

HHS Chief Wants CDC To Conduct Gun Research, Waving Off Congressional Restrictions

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“We believe we’ve got a very important mission with our work with serious mental illness as well as our ability to do research on the causes of violence and the causes behind tragedies like this,” HHS Secretary Alex Azar said. “So that is a priority for us.” Others spoke out about the longstanding policy that bars CDC from studying gun violence as a public health issue, as well.

Trump Promises To Tackle ‘Difficult Issue Of Mental Health’ Following Shooting, But Stays Quiet On Guns

KHN Morning Briefing

As national focus turns to mental health after the mass shooting in Florida, advocates warn against making assumptions about violence and mental health. “It feels like mental illness is being used as a political football to deflect attention away from some other important issues,” said Ron Honberg, senior policy adviser at the National Alliance on Mental Illness.

Brain Implant To Treat Addiction Comes With High Risk, High Reward

KHN Morning Briefing

Deep brain stimulation has shown some success in countering addiction, but implementing it requires a dangerous surgery. In other news on the nation’s drug crisis: the financial toll; police involvement in needle exchanges; opioid-makers’ donations to patient advocacy groups; and more.