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Trump to target opioid crisis with 'major briefing' in New Jersey

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Washington Post: It's time to reverse this catastrophe

Some 937 people died of drug overdoses the previous year.

In a separate study released Monday, University of Virginia researchers found that prescription opioid drugs and heroin death rates from 2008 to 2014 were substantially under-reported.

About twenty minutes earlier, Trump had tweeted a "Fox & Friends" segment on a new study showing America's opioid crisis is even worse than initially reported.

Christie also spoke in stark terms about the problem on CNN's "State of the Union" Sunday, reiterating the number of drug overdoses. "But if they don't start, it will never be a problem".

He also said his administration was working with China, where he said "certain forms of man-made" drugs are entering the country.

"Today I'm pleased to receive a briefing from our team on ways we can help our communities combat this absolutely awful epidemic and keep youth from going down this deadly path".

The president's efforts on the opioid crisis came under criticism on Tuesday from Democrats and liberal groups. Trump marked the occasion with a "listening session" - a roundtable with representatives from the Drug Enforcement Agency, Office of National Drug Control Policy, Department of Health and Human Services, and Harvard Medical School, among others - and gave the commission a late-June deadline for its preliminary status report.

Chris Christie, the panel suggested, "The first and most urgent recommendation of this commission is direct and completely within your control".

On what's been called a 17-day "working vacation" at his luxury New Jersey golf resort, President Donald Trump said he'll be briefed by his health chief Tuesday on what appears to be a worsening opioid crisis in the United States. Instead, the president repeated his well-worn pledge to be "very, very strong on our southern border". We are speaking to other countries, and we're getting cooperation.

"At the end of 2016, there were 23 percent fewer federal prosecutions than in 2011, so they looked at this surge and they let it go by".

Opioid overdoses have skyrocketed in recent years, leading state governments to commit millions to fighting the issue. We're not letting it go by.

Trump made frequent promises on the campaign trial that he would prioritize battling the nation's opioid scourge.

"So, we're going to do our job, we're going to get it going". We have no alternative. We have to win for our young people - and, frankly, we have to win for a lot of other people, not necessarily young that are totally addicted and have serious, serious problems. "Thank you all. Thank you".

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