A new report recommends elevating the director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy to a Cabinet-level position, and having the office coordinate federal efforts to respond to the opioid crisis, the Associated Press reports.
The report from the U.S. Commission on Combating Synthetic Opioid Trafficking, released Tuesday, recommends relying on law enforcement and diplomacy to disrupt the supply of chemicals used to make fentanyl and other synthetic opioids.
The commission recommends reducing demand for illicit substances through increasing prevention resources and access to treatment. Treatment programs should follow science-based best practices, the report states. The report also calls for developing surveillance and data analysis tools to more quickly discover new trends in illicit substance use.
“Through its work, the commission came to recognize the impossibility of reducing the availability of illegal synthetic opioids through efforts focused on supply alone,” the report said. “Real progress can come only by pairing illicit synthetic opioid supply disruption with decreasing the domestic U.S. demand for these drugs.”