ARLINGTON, Va. — Steve Anderson, president and chief executive officer of the National Association of Chain Drug Stores, took part in a meeting on the opioid epidemic with Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price.
NACDS said that at yesterday’s meeting Price sought to learn more about pharmacy’s role in addressing abuse and misuse of controlled substance prescriptions and how HHS could help.
“With all parties acknowledging the tremendous impact inflicted by this issue on communities and families across the nation, we had an excellent discussion about the extensive collaboration and focus that is needed to help solve the problem. We value the secretary’s appreciation of pharmacy’s zero tolerance for drug abuse and diversion and its 100% commitment to patient care,” Anderson said in a statement.
“We shared and discussed with the secretary the extensive comments that NACDS provided to the President’s Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis,” Anderson added, “and we remain committed to serving as a working partner to help protect American communities and families.”
Last week, President Donald Trump called on his administration “to use all appropriate emergency and other authorities to respond to the crisis caused by the opioid epidemic,” based on recommendations in the commission’s interim report.
The commission, chaired by New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, was formed in late March by executive order to study ways to stem the tide of drug abuse addiction, particularly opioid painkillers.
“President Trump is taking strong, decisive action in directing the administration to use all appropriate emergency and other authorities to respond to the crisis caused by the opioid epidemic. Today’s announcement demonstrates our sense of urgency to fight the scourge of addiction that is affecting all corners of this country,” Price stated following the president’s Aug. 10 directive. “Traveling the country, we have seen firsthand the devastation this crisis is inflicting on individuals, families and communities. President Trump’s announcement further punctuates his clear commitment to combating this epidemic and I thank him for his leadership.”