How many more Americans must die before Trump declares a state of emergency? (The Hill)
Friday Aug 11th, 2017
Earlier this week, President Trump tweeted that he will be holding “a major briefing on the opioid crisis, a major problem for our country.” Many of us in the public health community held out hope that this briefing would include a declaration of a national state of emergency, as recommended by the president’s own Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis.
No such declaration was made. At a time when 142 Americans per day die from overdose, it begs the question: How much worse does this epidemic need to get before it rises to the level of an emergency? Imagine if there were 142 people dying every day from a disease like Ebola or a natural disaster like a hurricane — there would be no question about the necessity of such a declaration.