The Haslam Administration announced it will unveil its Opioid Plan Monday, January 22 at the Old Supreme Court Chamber. Administration officials characterize it as an aggressive and comprehensive plan to confront the escalating drug crisis.
“Some of that will be for an actual bill,” Haslam told reporters from The Chattanooga Times Free Press on Friday. “Others will be things that won’t take legislative action but will be part of a comprehensive plan to address the opioid issue.”
Along with Governor Haslam, Lt. Governor Randy McNally, State House Speaker Beth Harwell, and Supreme Court Justice Jeffrey Bivins will be on hand to unveil what the Times Free Press calls a “multi-strategy plan involving prevention, treatment and law enforcement.”
The plan couldn’t come soon enough, as the Volunteer State has one of the nation’s fastest-growing opiod-associated death rates. According to a statement from the Tennessee Department of Health, 6,605 people have died from overdosing on opiates over the past five years (2012-2016), and from 2015 to 2016 alone, the number of deaths jumped a shocking 12.4 percent to 1,651. (2017 information is not yet available.)
Monday’s announcements is scheduled as an open event that begins at 2:00 pm.