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Obama’s drug control policy focuses on stemming heroin use

President Barack Obama.

REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

President Barack Obama.

ROANOKE, Va. (AP) — The Obama administration is unveiling a 2014 drug control policy with a focus on promoting drug treatment programs, as well as stemming heroin use and prescription painkillers abuse.

The White House’s Office of National Drug Control Policy’s acting director Michael Botticelli outlined the administration’s blueprint for limiting drug abuse Wednesday at a drug treatment facility in Roanoke, Virginia.

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Botticelli said the policy will continue to push for expanded health interventions and ‘‘smart on crime’’ alternatives proven to reduce drug use.

The strategy also calls for an enhanced focus on preventing overdoses from opioids, which include heroin and prescription painkillers. In March, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder called the increase in heroin-related deaths an urgent health crisis and said first responders should carry Narcan, an overdose reversal drug, with them.

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