The White House will try to stem the nation's opioid crisis partly by stiffening criminal penalties, including seeking the death penalty for drug traffickers, a senior official said Sunday.
The detail was included in a preview of President Donald Trump's opioid initiative, which he will announce Monday in New Hampshire.
In a conference call Sunday, the official said the death penalty would be sought for trafficking in some opioids, including fentanyl, "when appropriate under current law."
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The official declined to offer specifics and directed reporters to the Justice Department, which did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
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Trump's plan will also seek to reduce the number of opioid prescriptions filled across the country by one-third — a number the official attributed to the tightening of federal reimbursement policies and prescribing practices.
"We have a problem of overusing," the official said.
The official added that the plan will include alternative, non-addictive treatment options and a public-private partnership between the National Institutes of Health and pharmaceutical companies.
A public awareness campaign will help reduce demand, the official said, while a crackdown on illegal drugs passing over the border will reduce supply.