Democracy Now!

Opioid Crisis Declared National Public Health Emergency

President Trump announced Thursday that he is directing the Department of Health and Human Services to declare the opioid crisis a public health emergency — walking back his plans, announced in August, to declare it a more serious “national emergency.” The shift means the federal government will not, as of now, direct any new federal funds to address the opioid crisis, which killed 64,000 Americans last year. We speak with Columbia University psychology and psychiatry professor Carl Hart, who argues people are dying because of ignorance, not because of opioids.

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