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Tom Price said the Trump Administration believes opioids can be tackled without resorting to invoking emergency powers. (Photo: Price's office)

Despite recommendations by his own task force to declare a “national emergency” to help combat the opioid epidemic, the Trump administration’s approach to the problem appears instead to be a reliance on previously less-than-effective efforts to urge people to abstain from opioid use and impose longer, harsher prison terms for those who succumb. 

The administration disregarded the “urgent recommendation” of the President’s Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis. Tom Price, Health and Human Services secretary, said that it could be tackled without resorting to invoking emergency powers. 

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