Goshen, N.Y. – Earlier this week, the State announced a $1.1 billion settlement with large opioid distributors McKesson Corp., Cardinal Health Inc., and AmerisourceBergen Drug Corp.
Litigation remains against numerous other opioid distributors. Over the next few weeks, counties will make final decisions to opt into the settlement. Those that join in the settlement will be eligible to receive funding for both unrestricted uses and uses specific to fighting opioid abuse.
Orange County Executive Steven M. Neuhaus and Albany County Executive Dan McCoy, along with New York State Association of Counties (NYSAC) Executive Director Stephen J. Acquario, recently met with national counsel for the opioid litigation team in Washington, D.C. to discuss the pending settlement.
“This is as an opportunity to hold opioid distributors accountable for their unlawful actions, to fight the drug epidemic, and to provide assistance to taxpayers,” Neuhaus and McCoy said. “With opioid addiction increasing nationwide, we must take advantage of every opportunity to fund education and rehabilitation for our residents.”
Starting in late 2016, counties across New York commenced litigation against various opioid drug distributors. In 2019, the State of New York likewise filed suit.
“We wanted those responsible to compensate for the public funds our County has had to pay to address opioid addiction,” McCoy and Neuhaus stated. “We will continue to work with non-profits and physicians to bring heightened awareness to this critical issue.”
Acquario added: “Counties took the lead in the opioid litigation, and we appreciate the State’s joining in and helping us in this effort.”
If you or someone you know is struggling with opioid addiction, the following resources are available:
The Orange County Crisis Call Center (311): Individuals who have substance use disorders can dial 311 or 1-800-832-1200 for help and resources 24 hours a day.
Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Council (ADAC) of Orange County: 845-294-9000, www.adacinfo.com.
Orange County Department of Mental Health: 845-291-2600, www.co.orange.ny.us.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK.
For more information about the signs and symptoms of abuse, go to combatheroin.ny.gov.
Free Narcan training is available in Orange County. Narcan, also known as Naloxone, is a medication that can potentially save someone’s life. It reverses the effects of opioid medication, including extreme drowsiness, slowed breathing, or loss of consciousness. For information about Narcan training, contact the County’s Department of Mental Health at 291-2600 or firstname.lastname@example.org.