CONCORD, NH (CBS) – New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu says the arrival of a new opioid only worsens his state’s drug problem.
Sununu made the comments after learning about the recent arrival of carfentanil, a substance that law enforcement says is 10,000 times more powerful than morphine.
Sununu says it doesn’t take as much of carfentanil to be fatal.
“Literally a speck of it–grain of it–can be deadly,” Sununu said.
He says the problem doesn’t have any easy solutions, but he says his fellow governors are cooperating.
“I have been talking with the other governors; we’ve been talking with other groups across New England,” Sununu said. “I am very encouraged. They understand the severity of the issue.”
Sununu also voiced confidence that New Hampshire law enforcement also knows the depth of the problem.
He said federal money is available to fight the growing problem. His objective is to make sure the money goes where it is needed.
The New Hampshire legislature is also acting to fight the opioid problem. The New Hampshire House passed a bill Thursday that will ensure that drug treatment services will continue to be part of health insurance plans.
The New Hampshire House passed Senate Bill 157, a measure that is considered critical in continuing the state’s ability to fight opiod use.
In a statement, Concord Democratic state senator Dan Feltes says the bill will ensure drug treatment is a part of everyone’s primary care plan.
“Senate Bill 157 makes it abundantly clear that substance use disorder services shall be considered as part of network adequacy analyses. It also helps make sure consumers and their families know where to turn to for help, including when critical services are not available in their network,” Feltes said.
The arrival of carfentanil in New Hampshire coincides with the recent discovery in Ohio of a new opioid combination officials call “gray death.”
The fight against opioids became more intense in March when Sununu got into a war of words with Lawrence, MA mayor Dan Rivera. He blamed the Massachusetts city for being the source of most of the opiods flowing into the Granite State.
WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Ben Parker reports