BAINBRIDGE – Today, Congressman Dave Joyce (OH-14) applauded the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for awarding a combined $13,110,102to the Ohio Department of Health and the Cuyahoga County Board of Health to prevent opioid-related overdoses and deaths. Of that $13.1 million, which aims to advance the understanding of the opioid overdose epidemic and scale-up prevention and response activities, $8,698,506 was awarded to the Ohio Department of Health and $4,411,596 was awarded to the Cuyahoga County Board of Health.
“One of my top priorities in Congress is to ensure that federal funding effectively supports all of the life-saving work our local communities are carrying out on the front lines of the opioid crisis,” said Dave. “I applaud the CDC for awarding these grants to help Ohioans overcome this epidemic and will continue to do all I can to support prevention and education efforts, but also promote treatment, crack down on illegal distribution, and enhance resources for first responders and law enforcement.”
Earlier this year, Dave introduced the Comprehensive Opioid Program Extension (COPE) Act, which combats the opioid crisis by increasing the authorized resources available to the Department of Justice’s comprehensive opioid abuse reduction activities. Specifically, the COPE Act would increase the authorization for the comprehensive opioid abuse grant program by $70 million per year from 2020 through 2024, bringing the total provided annually for these grants to $400,000,000. These grants help local communities battle the opioid epidemic by:
- providing training and resources for first responders on opioid overdose reversal drugs and devices;
- enhancing collaboration between state criminal justice agencies and substance abuse agencies;
- enhancing law enforcement efforts to combat the illegal distribution of opioids;
- and developing or expanding programs to prevent youth opioid abuse, drug take-back initiatives, or for treatment alternatives to incarceration.
Opioids were involved in 47,600 (67.8%) of the 70,200 drug overdose deaths across the country in 2017. Sadly, Ohio is among the top five states with the highest rate of opioid-related deaths. Furthermore, from 2013 – 2017, nearly 1,000 babies in Ohio’s 14th Congressional District were born suffering from Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS), a serious withdrawal syndrome that occurs in newborns exposed to opioids during pregnancy. Studies also show that cases of NAS in the Buckeye State have tripled over the past decade, with the Ohio Department of Health reporting that treating newborns with NAS in 2015 alone was associated with more than $133 million in healthcare costs. According to a study conducted by Ohio State University, opioid addiction, abuse and overdose deaths costs Ohio anywhere from $6.6 billion to $8.8 billion, while the CDC estimates the total economic burden of opioid misuse in the United States to be $78.5 billion per year.
To learn more about Dave’s legislation to combat the opioid epidemic, which has been endorsed by organizations like Cleveland Clinic, UH, and MetroHealth, and national groups like the National District Attorneys Association, Addiction Policy Forum, Fraternal Order of Police, America’s Essential Hospitals and the National Sheriff’s Association, click here.