With opioid overdoses now the leading cause of accidental death in Washington state, Gov. Jay Inslee announced Monday a $30 million plan to address the crisis.
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Standing out at the governor’s news conference was Masitsa Muhanji and her 11-month-old daughter Nala.
She told us how a legitimate prescription for opioid pain pills led to a heroin addiction and then she found herself pregnant.
“I was like you know what? If no one's going to help me maybe I should just go have an abortion, I was just ready to give up,” Muhanji said.
Inslee is asking the legislature for $30 million to address the opioid crisis including more than $1 million to create more facilities directed at women in recovery who are pregnant or parenting.
‘We have 110 people who could be benefiting by this program today who are not and we're going to eliminate that waiting list to get it down to zero,” said the governor.
The program made all the difference for Muhanji and daughter Nala.
“I got control, I did the right thing and it went in and I got help and she's, sorry, she's living proof,” Muhanji said.
Another part of Inslee’s plan will fight the especially dangerous drug fentanyl. Needle exchange programs will be offered test strips that drug users can use to test for the deadly substance.
Clinicians call the addiction opioid substance disorder and the treatment is paid for largely by Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act.
The governor attacked Friday's decision by a Texas federal judge declaring Obamacare unconstitutional.
“We are not going to allow anybody or any party to take away this healthcare from the state of Washington. It's too precious,” Inslee said.
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