One hundred-thirty people die each day from opioid abuse. But, as shocking as that number is, since the beginning of the Trump administration deaths from opioid addiction have been on the decline. However, the coronavirus crisis has had an impact on opioid use. Certainly, those who have recently lost their jobs are more prone to drug abuse. But, beyond that, hospitals are reporting shortages of opioids that result from treatment of persons infected with coronavirus. And so, the opioid crisis has recently become a little more complicated.
According to the White House, the Trump administration secured six billion dollars to fight opioid abuse in 2018. And, the funding made an impact, reducing the number of deaths related to abuse. Beyond that, President Trump began the Safer Prescription Plan in an effort to reduce opioid prescriptions by one-third within three years. Also, the current administration is fighting to keep illegal drugs out of the country through the implementation of better border control measures. Our president takes a strong stance against drug abuse stating, “It is time to liberate our communities from this scourge of drug addiction.”
However, the reduction in deaths that result from opioid abuse is threatened by the current viral crisis. Predictably, when people lose their jobs, some tend to turn to substances for comfort and to ease pain. And so, the longer that people are out of work, the more drug abuse there will likely be.
Another unforeseen consequence of the coronavirus pandemic is that some medical facilities are running dangerously low on supplies of opioids due to the large numbers of patients with coronavirus that required these drugs during treatment. Politico.com asserts that some hospitals are reporting that they are having difficulty with re-supply.
Government agencies track, as best they can, legal and illegal opioid use. Doctors who over-prescribe run the risk of criminal prosecution. Citizens who abuse opioids may also incur criminal charges. If you need legal help, contact an attorney at Wyatt Law now.