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Shaheen Attends White House Meeting on Opioid and Heroin Crisis, Access to Treatment

**Shaheen and Directors Botticelli, Donovan and Munoz discussed Administration’s proposal for new funding to address opioid crisis** 

**Under Administration’s proposal to Congress, New Hampshire would be eligible for up to $5 million to expand access to treatment** 

(Washington, DC) – U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) attended a meeting today at the White House on the opioid and heroin epidemic with Michael Botticelli, Director of the National Drug Control Policy, Shawn Donovan, Director of the Office of Management and Budget, and Cecilia Munoz, Director of the Domestic Policy Council. Senators Ed Markey (D-MA) and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), and Representatives Katherine Clark (MA-5), Ben Luján (NM-3), Annie Kuster (NH-2) also participated in the meeting. Senator Shaheen, attending Members of Congress, and Directors Botticelli, Donovan and Munoz discussed the immediate need for funding to provide resources to law enforcement and treatment providers on the frontlines and expand access to treatment for Americans struggling with addiction. The discussion also focused on plans to engage grassroots supporters to increase education and awareness about the misuse of opioids, share information with providers about appropriate prescribing practices, and efforts to increase access to the overdose-reversal drug, Naloxone.

“The opioid and heroin crisis is shattering America’s families and communities, especially in New Hampshire where we are losing one person each day to drug overdose,” said Senator Shaheen. “I appreciate the opportunity to meet with the Obama Administration on their proposal to combat the devastating prescription drug epidemic in this country. I have repeatedly called for emergency funding in Congress to stem the tide of this crisis and I am glad to see the Administration is treating this like the national public health emergency that it is.”

Shaheen continued, “As Congress begins its conference on the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA), I will urge conferees to include funding to make the strategy laid out in CARA a reality. Without real dollars, CARA is the equivalent of offering a life preserver with no air in it. First responders and treatment providers in New Hampshire and around the country desperately need these resources today.”

New Hampshire has been one of the hardest hit states in the opioid and heroin epidemic. According to a 2014 study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, New Hampshire has the third highest death rate in the country due to overdoses, nearly twice the national average. Under the Administration’s FY2017 budget proposal to Congress, President Obama calls for $1.1 billion in new funding over two years to combat the opioid crisis and expand access to treatment and recovery services. New Hampshire would be eligible for up to $5 million over two years to expand access to treatment for opioid use disorders.

Shaheen is leading the effort in Congress to pass emergency supplemental funding for those on the frontlines of the opioid addiction crisis. Her legislation would provide supplemental appropriations totaling $600 million to programs at the Department of Justice and the Department of Health and Human Services that focus on treatment and recovery, and state and local law enforcement initiatives.