Sept. 4 (UPI) -- President Donald Trump on Wednesday awarded nearly $2 billion in grants to local and state agencies to fight the nationwide opioid crisis.
Trump was joined by Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar at the White House to speak about the $1.8 billion funding.
"These funds will be delivered to the communities where their help is most needed," Trump said.
About half of the funding -- $932 million -- will be awarded by the Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Administration to each of the 50 states and some U.S. territories.
The rest -- $900 million -- will go to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention over the course of three years. Those grants will help state and local governments keep track of overdose data and develop ways for agencies to help those who have overdosed to get treatment, Azar told reporters earlier in the day.
"So many lives are stopped cold by drugs," Trump said. "Whether it's death or just a ruined life. In many cases you have just a ruined life because of drugs. They never recover.
"My administration is determined to use every resource at our disposal to smash the grip of addiction."
The CDC says more than 70,000 people died from drug overdoses in 2017, more than 68 percent of which were related to opioids.