States make progress on opioid addiction treatment. Will it last?

Source: Abby Goodnough, New York Times (Paid Registration)

Even as Mr. Trump has started to claim victory over the opioid crisis, citing “results that are unbelievable” at a drug abuse summit in April, neither he nor his administration’s top health officials have talked publicly about extending federal grant funding for addiction treatment programs beyond next year, when it is scheduled to run out. Many in the addiction field fear that, with opioid overdose deaths finally beginning to level off, and other problems like high prescription drug costs emerging as campaign issues, the attention to treatment will dissipate.

The $3.3 billion in grants (allotted in 2017) have been especially crucial in Republican-led states that decided not to expand free Medicaid coverage to low-income adults under the Affordable Care Act, which guarantees addiction treatment as an “essential benefit.” Many of these states have been hit hard by the opioid epidemic, and the grants are their main source of financing for treatment.

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