White House to Announce Plan to Combat Prescription Drug Abuse


The Obama administration says it will announce a “national action plan” to address the prescription drug abuse epidemic next week. The White House Office of National Drug Control Policy says that prescription drug abuse is the nation’s fastest-growing drug problem. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that the number of people who have unintentionally overdosed on prescription drugs now exceeds the number who overdosed during the crack cocaine epidemic of the 1980s and the black tar heroin epidemic of the 1970s.

The plan is to be announced Tuesday by drug czar Gil Kerlikowske, Howard Koh, assistant secretary of the department of Health and Human Services, Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Margaret Hamburg, and Drug Enforcement Administration administrator Michele Leonhart.

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