Maryland opioid epidemic spurs state of emergency declaration from governor

Republican Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan is targeting the opioid abuse crisis in his state by increasing funds and coordination between jurisdictions to boost treatment and prevention efforts.

Here are five things to know.

1. Gov. Hogan said Wednesday he declared a state of emergency amid the heroin, opioid and fentanyl crisis affecting Maryland and states nationwide.

2. The decision "activates the governor's emergency management authority and enables increased and more rapid coordination between the state and local jurisdictions," a news release states.

3. In addition to the declaration, the state has created a 5-year supplemental budget of $50 million in new funding over to combat the crisis in Maryland, state officials said. The funding will go toward prevention, recovery and enforcement.  

4. The governor tasked his senior emergency management advisor Clay Stamp with leading the state's efforts to address the opioid and heroin crisis, according to the release.

5. "We need to treat this crisis the exact same way we would treat any other state emergency. With this continuing threat increasing at such an alarming rate, we must allow for rapid coordination with our state and local emergency teams," said Gov. Hogan in the release. "We must cut through the red tape so that we are empowering the important work being done in our many state agencies and at the local level all across our state. This is about taking an all-hands-on-deck approach so that together we can save the lives of thousands of Marylanders."


More articles on opioids:
Heroin overdose deaths increase fourfold from 2010 to 2015
Minnesota lawmakers introduce 5 bills to combat opioid epidemic
15 states where drug overdose deaths increased most from 2014-2015

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