Biden administration awards $1.5 billion to fight opioid crisis

US President Joe Biden speaks about the DISCLOSE Act at the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington, DC on September 20, 2022.
Saul Loeb | AFP | Getty Images

The Biden administration announced Friday it is awarding $1.5 billion in grants to help states, territories and tribal lands combat the opioid crisis.

The grants will expand access to treatment and recovery support services, allow states to invest in better overdose education and increase the accessibility of FDA-approved naloxone products, which are used to help reverse an opioid overdose.

Last year, more than 107,000 people died after overdosing in the U.S., according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The figure marked a 15% increase in overdose-related deaths from 2020.

Members of the Biden administration, including Second Gentleman Douglas Emhoff and U.S. Secretary of Labor Marty Walsh, attended a Recovery Month Summit Friday to show support for individuals in recovery and discuss the grant funding.

“As someone in long-term recovery, I know how important access to mental health and substance use disorder treatment is,” Walsh wrote on Twitter.

More than $104 million in funding will specifically aim to support rural communities, which have been particularly hard-hit by the opioid crisis. It will be allocated for workforce training, education and outreach as well as new sites for medication-assisted treatment.

Biden also called for an investment of more than $42.5 billion in funding for National Drug Control Agencies as part of his 2023 fiscal-year budget. The investment would mark a $3.2 billion increase from the previous year.

Sophie Tremblay

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