U.S. Senator Tackles Opioid Problem

Senator Ron Wyden and Dr. Jim Shames listen to other medical professionals talk about the opioid problem, in Medford, Oregon, Saturday, February 13th, 2016. (KTVL/Ariana Rakhshani).

MEDFORD, Ore.-- Health officials and A U.S. Senator are trying to tackle the opioid problem.

Sentor Ron Wyden met with health officials on Saturday from Jackson County Health and Human Services, Asante, Providence Health and Services, La Clinica, and more.

Together, they discussed what is going on in the Rogue Valley, and what needs to change.

The Senator said the opioid problem is hitting the state like a wrecking ball. He said in 2014, opioid pain relievers were involved in almost 19,000 deaths nationwide.

''We can take that information and come up with a sensible, bipartisan bill that's based on the science of reducing opioid addiction rather than something that might sound good, but won't pan out," Senator Wyden said.

Senator Wyden is going to Portland and Eugene this coming week to meet with other health professionals about the issue. He said the Senate may take this issue into consideration over the next few weeks.

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