SEATTLE (AP) - Gov. Jay Inslee has issued an executive order to fight opioid abuse in Washington state.
Inslee on Friday ordered state agencies to work with local public health, tribal and other officials to respond to the growing problem of overdoses of opioids such as heroin and prescription narcotics. The agencies must work on the state's response plan and report on its progress by the end of this year.
Inslee made the announcement at the University of Washington Medical Center in Seattle where he was joined by medical providers, law enforcement officials, patients and family members who have been affected by opioid abuse.
Last year, 718 people died from opioid overdoses in Washington. While prescription opioid drug deaths have declined, heroin overdose deaths are increasing, particularly among young people.