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Now, U.S. Sen. Joe Donnelly is leading the federal charge to fight the crisis.
Donnelly is an advocate of funding to expand prevention and treatment programs. He helped pass laws that help fund addiction programs.
Donnelly says fighting the crisis requires an all-hands-on-deck approach. He believes it's going to take all levels of government to make a difference.
A big focus of Donnelly's is providing access to "telemedicine" in rural counties.
"Whether you're in Warren County or whether you're in Newton County, that you're still able to be able to talk to folks at Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis, at Northwestern in Chicago, at some of the best medical facilities in the world for addiction assistance treatment," said Donnelly.
Donnelly also says he is working to address the shortage of medical providers treating substance abuse.