Press Release

AAF Report on the State of the Opioid Epidemic

“Congress may play a role in these reforms, but the burden of implementing them lies with a range of actors including state and local governments, insurance companies, drug manufacturers, medical-care providers, and patients.”

With President Trump planning to speak about the opioid-abuse epidemic during tonight’s State of the Union address, the American Action Forum released a new report on the state of the crisis and policy options to combat it. In summary:

  • Opioids account for more than 42,000 deaths annually in the United states—and that figure is increasing.
  • Drug manufacturers and doctors are trying to limit access to prescription opioids, with limited success, while many with substance-abuse disorders are moving from prescription opioids to illegal synthetic drugs that are much more powerful.
  • Effective short-term and long-term treatment options exist, yet barriers to their access remain prevalent.
  • Recent policy responses and funding proposals, such as reducing regulatory barriers to treatments and boosting funding to states, are insufficient on their own to resolve the crisis.

Click here to read the report.