White House Takes New Steps To Combat Drug Abuse

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President Barack Obama wants to spend an extra $1.2 billion to fight the prescription drug epidemic.

The money would pay for treatment for people addicted to opiod medicine and heroin. Oftentimes, people hooked on pain pills turn to heroin, because it is much cheaper.

The White House will request the money in the upcoming 2017 budget.

The major of it -- about $920 million -- would be given to the states. The remainder would go toward federal treatment programs and to increasing access to an overdose reversal drug known as Naloxone.

Erin Finkbiner said Naloxone saved her life.

"To give people the chance to get to where I am would be amazing," Finkbiner said. "So I think the more awareness we can make of the situations, the better, the more opportunity."

The Obama administration said there has been a steep increase in the number of heroin overdoses nationwide, with deaths from the drug quadrupling in the past decade.

Many who abuse heroin initially used prescription painkillers.

Now, the budget proposal will head to Congress for approval.

 

Segment Sponsored By: Mercy Health System