States: Federal money for opioid crisis a small step forward - WDRB 41 Louisville News

States: Federal money for opioid crisis a small step forward

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Former U.S. Rep. Patrick Kennedy, a Democrat who served on Trump's opioid commission, said Congress needs to recognize the epidemic as "a huge gorilla on the nation's shoulder" and spend billions more. Former U.S. Rep. Patrick Kennedy, a Democrat who served on Trump's opioid commission, said Congress needs to recognize the epidemic as "a huge gorilla on the nation's shoulder" and spend billions more.

By GEOFF MULVIHILL
Associated Press

CHERRY HILL, N.J. (AP) -- Congress is putting record funding into the fight against the nation's deepening opioid drug crisis.

But some officials and advocates don't think the $4.6 billion in the federal appropriation bill signed Friday by President Donald Trump is enough to establish the kind of treatment system that would help solve the epidemic.

Former U.S. Rep. Patrick Kennedy, a Democrat who served on Trump's opioid commission, said Congress needs to recognize the epidemic as "a huge gorilla on the nation's shoulder" and spend billions more.

The allocation includes funding for states, research, drug treatment programs and law enforcement. It's about three times as much as the nation spent last year addressing opioids.

Republican U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt calls the wide-ranging funding "a major step."

Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. 

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