Maine's Opioid Epidemic
As Maine loses one person a day on average to drug-related overdoses, I'm working to make that our state has the federal resources it needs to address the crisis.
More on Maine's Opioid Epidemic
PORTLAND, ME—Congresswoman Chellie Pingree (D-Maine) and several of her House colleagues have sent a letter to President Trump calling on him to address the opioid epidemic raging in their states. The letter comes after the President’s Commission on Combatting Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis missed two self-imposed deadlines then finally released its initial findings.
Today, Congresswoman Chellie Pingree joined her House colleagues in voting for a $1.17 trillion bipartisan spending bill which will fund the government through September 2017. In House negotiations, Pingree strongly advocated for several key programs to be funded in the final bill. Some of the programs that are of particular importance to Maine include:
Congresswoman Chellie Pingree today held a roundtable at the Capitol in Augusta to discuss ties between federal funding and the condition of Maine’s public health infrastructure.
In light of potential funding cuts from a repeal of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), Pingree heard from organizations in Maine about the importance of continued federal support. She also heard about the negative impacts to public health that have been caused by Maine’s forfeiture of federal funding in recent years.
After a tour and roundtable at Portland Recovery Community Center today, Congresswoman Chellie Pingree said the stories she heard of Mainers in substance use recovery speak to the need for greater access to treatment options and follow-up support in Maine.
Congresswoman Chellie Pingree today voted in support of the 21st Century Cures Act. The legislation dedicates $1 billion over two years to help states battle opioid addiction and $4.8 billion over 10 years for medical research initiatives. It also streamlines the FDA approval process, makes key mental health reforms, and contains tick-borne disease provisions Pingree advocated for.
Congresswoman Chellie Pingree said a proposal by President Obama to provide $1.1 billion in funding to tackle heroin and opioid addiction is much needed.
"This drug epidemic has hit Maine hard—an average of 5 people a week are dying of overdoses, jails are overcrowded and emergency medical calls are increasing," Pingree said. "Almost everyone seems to know a family that has been impacted by opioid addiction. I'm glad the President has stepped forward with this initiative."
Congresswoman Chellie Pingree joined Senator Angus King and Director of National Drug Control Policy Michael Botticelli to discuss the growing problem of heroin addiction in Maine. The roundtable discussion included people in recovery, families dealing with addiction issues, health care providers, law enforcement officials, first responders, and other local leaders. The meeting took place at Eastern Maine Healthcare Systems in Brewer.