On Wednesday, November 10, 2021, Michael Bloomberg stated that he would be giving a $120 million investment to help fight drug overdose. According to the statement of eponymous philanthropy, Bloomberg Philanthropies will be investing $120 million over the next five years in New Jersey, Kentucky, New Mexico, Wisconsin, and North Carolina to address the crisis over opioid overdose. The group stated that the five states they chose were the ones that were hit hard by the wave deaths of the drug opioid. Each state will receive about $10 million each over the next five years. In addition, they will also add $4 million each to Michigan and Pennsylvania to stop the deaths rising from a drug overdose.

The former mayor of New York City, Bloomberg, is the founder of the philanthropic group. According to the statistics, about two hundred fifty-four Americans die every day from a drug overdose. Bloomberg believes that a bolder and nationwide action needs to be done because the crisis is tearing families apart all over the country.

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The rising number of people who died from a drug overdose was concerning. That is why Bloomberg announced the pledge to help fight the battle in the healthcare summit that he also organized. In 2018, he already committed to donating $50 million towards the same goal. With almost triple the previous amount he presented, he hopes to stop the deaths from the said prohibited drugs finally. The donation he made follows an initial finding from the federal Centers for the Disease Control and Prevention that about 93,000 people died from a drug overdose in 2020 alone; opioids caused the majority of the dead. The reported number is about 30% more than the total number of deaths in 2019, and it is recorded to be the highest number of deaths in a single year.

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Kelly J. Henning, the head who leads the public health program at the Bloomberg Philanthropies, stated that they are taking the wrong path and hopes that they will eventually stop the problem from a drug overdose with the decision to donate to five states. Henning thinks that Bloomberg’s Overdose Prevention Initiative who helped support the exact cause, has helped to improve the current situation. Bloomberg Philanthropies already started helping Pennsylvania by funding different projects that aim to stop drug abuse in prisons. They have also distributed a drug named naloxone, which can help prevent a drug overdose during emergencies, to police departments and firefighters.

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Sources: The Hill, Penn Live, US News

 

 

 

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