(NBC News) President Trump on Thursday declared the opioid crisis a national public health emergency.
The president said 64,000 Americans died from overdoses last year. That is about 175 people a day, or seven every hour.
“This epidemic is a national health emergency,” Trump said during an address at the White House. “Nobody has seen anything like what is going on now. As Americans, we cannot allow this to continue. It is time to liberate our communities from this scourge of drug addiction.”
Trump said he directed federal agencies to use all their resources to fight the drug crisis, including focusing on providing improved treatment for addicts. Today’s declaration reallocates existing funds and provides better access to medical care and addiction treatment.
“We can be the generation that ends opioid addiction, we can do it,” said President Trump.
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