The opioid crisis has had a profound impact on the lives of Americans across the country, and it’s not just the cost of prescription opioids that’s been high.
The president and his administration have also shown no signs of addressing it.
As we reported this week, the White House has made no moves to curb the opioid crisis, and a major task force headed by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine has called for the White the use of a single-payer system that would guarantee healthcare for all Americans, regardless of income or income level.
Trump and his top advisers have said they’re committed to the opioid solution, even though there are few signs that the federal government is seriously considering it.
But as we wrote this week: …
Trump’s advisers have also refused to answer questions about the opioid epidemic, even as some experts are concerned about its impact on Americans’ health and well-being.
In the past two weeks, the administration has refused to confirm the existence of a commission on the opioid problem, as required by law, even after House Speaker Paul Ryan said he’d be open to holding one.
And Trump’s top advisers on opioids, including his former National Economic Council director, have refused to explain the administration’s position on the crisis, even to his own health team.
But on Wednesday, White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus acknowledged that the administration would continue to support the opioid plan, but said he didn’t know how long the president would keep the promise.
“It’s up to him,” Priebus told reporters.
“We’re not going to be going out there and saying, ‘Hey, look, if you’re not on board, we’re not really going to move forward.’
We’re going to make sure that we’re in a position to continue to provide the best healthcare possible to the American people.”
Priebus, however, didn’t address the opioid issue during a briefing Thursday, a day after White House chief of staff John Kelly issued a public statement that said Trump is committed to making sure every American has access to quality, affordable healthcare.
Priebus said Trump’s opioid strategy includes making sure “all Americans are getting the care they need, that they’re getting the health care they deserve.”
Priebus said it is important to make clear that the opioid prescription opioid crisis is not a national emergency.
“This is not something that’s going to go away,” he said.
“There is no silver bullet.
There is no magic bullet.”
Trump and the administration have faced increasing criticism for their handling of the opioid situation, as health care costs have soared.
In the first month of the Trump presidency, healthcare costs topped $1 trillion, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, an increase of nearly 40 percent over the same period of the previous administration.
In May, Trump signed an executive order that gave the National Institutes of Health the authority to develop a new drug to treat opioid-induced opioid addiction.
The NIH’s goal is to develop the drug, called naltrexone, which is meant to treat an overdose that has led to a death or a significant disability.
But according to an analysis by the New America Foundation, the NIH has so far only received two clinical studies of naltoxone.
Trump has also repeatedly praised pharmaceutical companies for the rapid pace of drug development.
In February, he praised the speed at which a pharmaceutical company, Merck, had received FDA approval for a new treatment for the painkiller fentanyl, calling it a “game-changer.”
In June, Trump declared that “nobody is going to have to go through what I’ve gone through.”
He said that “people are going to get better at doing the things that I have been doing for so many years.”
Trump also has promised to “get rid of all the regulation.”
In his first month in office, the Department of Health and Human Services reported that drug prices jumped by nearly 50 percent in fiscal year 2017.
But even though the cost to American families has risen, the drug industry has managed to sell drugs at far lower prices.
In fiscal year 2018, drug companies made a total of $1.8 billion on sales of prescription opioid drugs, compared to $1 billion in fiscal years 2017 and 2016, according the New York Times.
Trump’s administration has also struggled to keep up with a growing number of opioid-related deaths in the United States.
Since taking office, there have been nearly 4,400 opioid-associated deaths in 2018, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in its monthly update on the national opioid crisis.
Nearly 6,800 people have died of opioid overdoses in 2018 alone, and about 3,300 of them were under the age of 25.
More than 7,400 people died of overdose in 2017, and more than 4,700 died of opioids in 2017.
Trump hasn’t responded to our requests for comment on whether he supports a single payer system for healthcare and whether he would continue his promise to “do everything in my power” to help American families. But