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Donnelly Welcomes Trump Move to Declare Opioid Crisis a National Emergency

August 11, 2017

Donnelly_front of capital 2017U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly welcomed the announcement from President Donald Trump that he plans to declare the opioid abuse epidemic a national emergency.

Donnelly said, “I am pleased that President Trump plans to declare the opioid epidemic a national emergency. We know that it will take all of us working together to effectively turn the tide against this public health crisis that has harmed so many families in Indiana and across the country. I hope this declaration will lead to necessary, additional resources for states and local communities to ensure those battling substance use disorders can access treatment.”

Donnelly has been a leading voice in the fight against the opioid abuse and heroin use epidemic. Over the past three-plus years as Indiana has been devastated by the opioid abuse and heroin use epidemics, Donnelly has actively and effectively fought for new efforts to support prevention, treatment, and recovery programs.

He helped pass the 21st Century Cures Act into law, which includes a $10.9 million federal grant that will support prevention, treatment, and recovery services in Indiana. Donnelly also helped enact the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA), which included several of his provisions.

He recently introduced a bipartisan package of legislation aimed at providing the facilities and access to telemedicine needed to prevent and treat substance use disorder in rural communities. In June, Donnelly introduced bipartisan legislation to help address the shortage of providers who treat people battling substance use disorders by making addiction treatment facilities eligible for the National Health Service Corps (NHSC) student loan repayment and forgiveness program.

Earlier this year, Donnelly brought Dr. Tim Kelly, a leading practitioner of addiction medicine in Indianapolis and thought leader in the fight against the opioid epidemic, to President Trump’s Joint Address before Congress. He invited Dr. Kelly to highlight the critical work he and other providers are doing across Indiana on the frontlines to help treat Hoosiers battling opioid addiction and other dangerous substances.