Democratic candidate, Hillary Clinton speaks often in her presidential campaign about the scourge of drug addiction and overdoses in the U.S. and has recently released some of the details of her plan to battle the issue. Clinton’s 10 billion dollar plan includes increased federal spending on treatment for addiction and education programs that will teach teens about the dangers of drug use.
The candidate is especially concerned about highly addictive drugs like heroin and methamphetamine which she calls a “quiet epidemic” that has deeply affected rural America. After having many eye opening discussions with voters on the subject, addiction become a major priority in her campaign and she has worked to create a policy on abuse and treatment that would actively target the growing problem. For the candidate, fighting drug addiction is one of her top goals that will receive attention as president.
Increased Spending for Drug Programs
Clinton is proposing better-financed prevention and treatment options before criminalization and better access to mental health services which voters claim is lacking under the Affordable Care Act. She has already called for reform to the criminal justice system and prison system which is overflowing with low-level drug offenders. Her plan would offer money to fund local “drug courts” in which people who are arrested for minor offenses related to addiction are given treatment and close oversight instead of jail time.Existing drug courts especially in rural America have proven effective by helping to save money and even turning people’s lives around but budget cuts have threatened the future of these programs.
Clinton is hoping to curb some of the epidemic rise in prescription drug abuse, addiction and overdose by focusing on the role of doctors in providing these drugs. Her plan would require doctors to first check an online registry before prescribing addictive medication to see if their patients have obtained similar drugs from other physicians. While many states have such a registry designed to make it harder for addicts to get multiple prescriptions, physician groups have managed to oppose any requirement to reference the registry before prescribing medication.
Fighting Addiction and Overdose
Hillary Clinton’s anti-addiction plan would also broaden first-responders’ access to naloxone, a medication that works to reverse the effects of an overdose and save a person’s life. She vowed that her addiction plan would involve spending over $7.5 billion over 10 years in order to strengthen the efforts of states and local communities battling the problem. It would also add 2.5 billion dollars in federal block grants for treatment programs.
The former Secretary of State often speaks on the nation’s drug problems in states like Iowa where addiction has become a dangerous epidemic. Heroin and narcotic pain pills have become a frightening trend in Iowa where overdoses doubled in just the past few years. Drugs like heroin are cheap, easy to find and incredibly addictive. In Clinton’s campaign appearances she has emphasized that now more Americans die from drug overdoses than from traffic accidents every year.
In a recent opinion piece Clinton mentioned that drug addiction is a longstanding problem that we need to finally to address. She said that as a nation we should recognize that we have had this epidemic of addiction which is a disease and not a moral failing and must be treated as such. Many of the other candidates are also pushing for increased spending on drug treatment including her democratic rival Martin O’Malley and republican candidates Chris Christie and Carly Fiorina. These candidates are hoping to expand drug treatment to combat the disease of addiction that has increasingly plagued the U.S. and finally address the problem head on.