Post Content

Today I had the distinct pleasure of appearing before the United States House of Representatives Committee on Energy and Commerce, Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations at a hearing entitled “What are the State Governments Doing to Combat the Opioid Abuse Epidemic?”.  It was an honor to represent the Baker Administration and share what we are doing in Massachusetts to build a pathway to recovery.

Like so many states across the nation, Massachusetts is facing a growing epidemic of opioid addiction and overdose deaths. In 2014, an estimated 1,008 people died of an opioid related overdose – a 51% increase over the 668 deaths that occurred in 2012.

In my testimony, I outlined each of the steps that the Baker Administration is currently taking – including the Governor’s Opioid Working Group – and the work we have ahead of us, including eliminating roadblocks to recovery and addressing the stigma attached to substance use disorders head on.

To fully address this crisis, we must take action across the spectrum – prevention, intervention, treatment, and recovery supports – in partnership with municipal leadership, schools, public safety, the addiction treatment and recovery community, and the medical community.

The Department of Public Health and the entire Baker Administration under the leadership of Secretary Sudders are committed to working not just harder, but smarter, to fight this epidemic by focusing our shared efforts and resources on the most evidence-based and proven programs that truly impact the public’s health. And in doing so, to make the best possible use of data to demonstrate which programs make the biggest difference. I encourage you to read my full testimony which is available here.

Written By:


Commissioner of the Department of Public Health

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Recent Posts

Highlights of the July 11th Public Health Council Meeting posted on Jul 11

The July monthly meeting of the Public Health Council included two Determination of Need (DON) requests followed by a series of informational presentations from DPH subject matter experts. First, the Council took up a DON request from Sunbridge Healthcare, LLC for a substantial capital expenditure   …Continue Reading Highlights of the July 11th Public Health Council Meeting

Do You Know What’s in Your Beverage? posted on Jul 10

Do You Know What’s in Your Beverage?

With so many beverages available in supermarkets and corner stores, it’s difficult to know what is good for us (and our kids!) and what isn’t.  Have you ever wondered if some of these beverages are as healthy as they actually claim to be? Labels on   …Continue Reading Do You Know What’s in Your Beverage?

Tracking the Latest Environmental Health Trends in MA posted on Jun 19

Massachusetts Environmental Public Health Tracking (EPHT) is a program that brings together environmental health data to inform residents about health and the environment in their community and throughout the state. Our program, now 16 years old, has a wealth of environmental health information available and   …Continue Reading Tracking the Latest Environmental Health Trends in MA