5-Point Strategy To Combat the Opioid Crisis

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In 2017, HHS launched a comprehensive 5-Point Strategy to empower local communities on the frontlines. The opioid epidemic is one of the Department’s top priorities; through the 5-Point Strategy and HHS’s Agency Priority Goal of Reducing Opioid Morbidity and Mortality, the Department continues to focus on most effective efforts for addressing opioid use disorder.

Better addiction prevention, treatment, and recovery services

Better data

Better pain management

Better targeting of overdose reversing drugs

Better research

1. Access: Better Prevention, Treatment, and Recovery Services

HHS issued over $800 million in grants in 2017 to support treatment, prevention, and recovery, while making it easier for states to receive waivers to cover treatment through their Medicaid programs. (Issued 5 such SUD waivers since PHE declaration.)

2. Data: Better Data on the Epidemic

HHS is improving our understanding of the crisis by supporting more timely, specific public health data and reporting, including through accelerating CDC’s reporting of drug overdose data.

3. Pain: Better Pain Management

HHS wants to ensure everything we do — payments, prescribing guidelines, and more — promotes healthy, evidence-based methods of pain management.

4. Overdoses: Better Targeting of Overdose-Reversing Drugs

HHS works to better target the availability of  lifesaving overdose-reversing drugs. The President’s 2019 Budget includes $74 million in new investments to support this goal.

5. Research: Better Research on Pain and Addiction

HHS supports cutting edge research on pain and addiction, including through a new NIH public-private partnership.

HHS’s Agency Priority Goal of Reducing Opioid Morbidity and Mortality

Agency Priority Goals (APGs) provide a mechanism for agencies to focus priorities, set outcomes, and attain measurable results. HHS’s Reducing Opioid Morbidity and Mortality APG aligns with the 5-Point Strategy and focuses on the prevention of opioid misuse, treatment of existing opioid addiction, and prevention of opioid overdose, with the immediate aim of preventing further increases in these negative outcomes.