OPIOIDS

One day after announcing that fewer Massachusetts residents have died from opioid overdoses this year than last, Gov. Charlie Baker delivered a slate of proposals to combat the epidemic, including reforms for prescribing and treatment, at a press conference Tuesday.

MassLive

The Board of Selectmen of Montague, Massachusetts, was scheduled to meet Monday night to confirm an acting police chief.

President Trump declared the opioid crisis a public health emergency on Thursday, freeing up resources to deal with the epidemic.

Last year, more than 64,000 people died from drug overdoses, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention National Center for Health Statistics. Many of those overdoses were from heroin, prescription painkillers, fentanyl and other opioids.

Updated at 2:50 p.m. ET

President Trump declared a public health emergency to deal with the opioid epidemic Thursday, freeing up some resources for treatment. More than 140 Americans die every day from an opioid overdose, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

"We are currently dealing with the worst drug crisis in American history," Trump said, adding, "it's just been so long in the making. Addressing it will require all of our effort."

"We can be the generation that ends the opioid epidemic," he said.

Michelle Williams / Masslive.com

The city of Northampton, Massachusetts, plans to coordinate a county-wide effort to prevent opioid-related deaths, thanks to a new $1.7 million federal grant.

Items seized in Springfield, Mass., during drug busts on August 7, 2017.
Sean Teehan / NEPR

Last month, President Donald Trump announced his intent to declare a state of emergency in response to the nation's opioid crisis.

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health launched a media campaign encouraging parents to talk to their teens about the dangers of prescription opioid abuse.
Massachusetts Department of Public Health

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health has launched a media campaign aimed at preventing misuse of prescription opioids among teens.

State public health officials hope the ad campaign will inspire parents to talk to their teens about how slippery the slope from prescription pill abuse to heroin and Fentanyl addiction can be.

Jess Tilley pushes aside magazines on a waiting room table and lines up three used “cookers” — small aluminum caps in which someone mixed and heated up their drugs. She mixes water with drug residue at the bottom of each cap. The demonstration is ready.

It's April, and we're now about three months into a new legislative session in Massachusetts, but there's not much to show for it. However, lawmakers have been holding hearings on Governor Charlie Baker's budget proposal, and those will wrap up this week.

For all things Beacon Hill, we spoke with State House News Service reporter Matt Murphy, as we do most Mondays. The Massachusetts House is next in line to put out a budget recommendation. Murphy said we can expect to see that in the next few weeks.