Wash­ing­ton, DC

The Week Middle East - - News -

Opi­oids vow: Pres­i­dent Trump has de­clared Amer­ica’s opi­oid drugs cri­sis to be a “na­tional emer­gency” and vowed to spend “a lot of time, a lot of ef­fort and a lot of money” on re­solv­ing it. It fol­lows a re­port last month by a pres­i­den­tial com­mis­sion, led by New Jersey gov­er­nor Chris Christie, which de­scribed the death toll as “Septem­ber 11th ev­ery three weeks”. Over­doses of opi­oids – a broad cat­e­gory of le­gal and il­le­gal drugs rang­ing from pre­scrip­tion painkillers to fen­tanyl and heroin – killed an es­ti­mated 33,000 Amer­i­cans in 2015, the lat­est year for which fig­ures are avail­able. The opi­oid cri­sis has been blamed for ris­ing mor­tal­ity rates among adults aged 25 to 44, and for a surge in the num­ber of men “miss­ing” from the labour mar­ket.

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