ALBANY, NY – New York Attorney General Letitia James continued her New York statewide “HealNY” tour with a recent stop in Albany County, where she announced she would provide up to $ 32 million to the capital region to fight the opioid epidemic.
The funds come from various settlements that Attorney General James negotiated following his March 2019 lawsuit against the various manufacturers and distributors responsible for the opioid crisis. Attorney General James’ tour will stop in dozens of New York counties throughout October, with up to $ 1.5 billion in funds going to counties in New York state.
“For over 20 years, the Capital Region has seen the dangerous and deadly results of opioid addiction, but today we bring good news to the region by announcing that we will donate $ 32 million to the region. of the capital to fight opioids. crisis, ”Attorney General James said. “With these funds, we can heal New York City and turn the tide of the opioid crisis by investing in opioid prevention, treatment and recovery.
“While no amount of money will ever make up for all of those we have lost to this deadly addiction, these funds will be essential in helping prevent future deaths. “
The lawsuit brought by Attorney General James in 2019 was, at the time, the largest lawsuit in the country against various manufacturers and distributors of opioids. These manufacturers and distributors were responsible for the massive marketing of opioids to physicians, hospitals, health systems and others, which has led to the over-prescription of the drugs in New York and the rest of the country for the past two decades. . The manufacturers named in Attorney General James’ complaint included Purdue Pharma and its affiliates, as well as members of the Sackler family (owners of Purdue) and the trusts they control; Janssen Pharmaceuticals and its subsidiaries (including its parent company Johnson & Johnson); Mallinckrodt LLC and its affiliates; Endo Health Solutions and its affiliates; Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc. and its subsidiaries; and Allergan Finance, LLC and its affiliates. The distributors named in the complaint were McKesson Corporation, Cardinal Health Inc., Amerisource Bergen Drug Corporation and Rochester Drug Cooperative Inc.
Last month, a deal with Endo was announced that has already provided $ 50 million to New York State, Nassau and Suffolk counties to tackle the opioid crisis and remove the opioid maker from l opioid trial underway in New York.
Additionally, a settlement last month that raised more than $ 4.5 billion – of which at least $ 200 million will go to New York – from the Sackler family and the foundations they control, put The Sacklers’ ability to re-manufacture opioids ended, and the shutdown of Purdue Pharma was announced.
In July, an agreement with McKesson, Cardinal Health and Amerisource Bergen that will provide up to $ 1 billion to New York State to fight the opioid epidemic was announced.
In June, a settlement ending the sale of opioids by Johnson & Johnson nationwide that will bring in $ 230 million in New York City alone was announced. The deals with Johnson & Johnson, McKesson, Cardinal Health and Amerisource Bergen have an aggregate value of around $ 26 billion.
The cases against Mallinckrodt and Rochester Drug Cooperative are now proceeding separately in the United States bankruptcy court.
The trial against the two remaining defendants – Teva Pharmaceuticals USA and Allergan Finance – is currently ongoing and is continuing in state court.
Under the new law establishing the Opioid Settlement Fund, all funds raised by the state from opioid settlements or court victories will be allocated specifically to reduction efforts in communities devastated by the opioid epidemic and will not go to the general state fund.
Every region of the state will receive millions of dollars for prevention, treatment and recovery programs to fight the opioid crisis.
The numbers below represent the minimum and maximum amounts each county can receive from settlements with Johnson & Johnson, McKesson, Cardinal Health, Amerisource Bergen and Endo. The more locations across the state that accept the terms of these various regulations, the more each location is eligible to receive. The figures below do not include payments from Purdue Pharma or the Sackler family, as the regional breakdown of these payments is still being finalized. These funds, as well as any funds from future or pending litigation, would be in addition to what is stated below.
Capital region total: $ 17,812,303.23 – $ 32,524,114.04 *
• Albany County: $ 3,237,298.22 – $ 5,725,907.53 **
• Columbia County: $ 552,101.82 – $ 964,528.42
• Greene County: $ 666,825.42 – $ 1,164,951.91
• County of Rensselaer: $ 1,068,187.17 – $ 1,866,135.66
• Saratoga County: $ 1,411,643.69 – $ 2,466,158.27
• Schenectady County: $ 1,023,351.66 – $ 1,787,807.49
• County of Warren: $ 514,587.63 – $ 898,990.69
• Washington County: $ 403,409.72 – $ 704,761.55
* In addition to the total sum of the counties, a regional share is also allocated here.
** Not all funds go to the county. Also includes funds going directly to a major city in the county.
“The opioid epidemic has devastated our communities across New York State,” said State Senator Neil Breslin. “The ‘HealNY’ tour is desperately needed, and funding is critical to reducing opioid use in our state. Attorney General James has been relentless in his fight against opioid use and has held drug companies to account. “
“I want to express my gratitude for the job well done by New York Attorney General Letitia James in dealing with the deals made with major multinational players that have helped fuel the opioid and heroin crises.” said State Assembly Member John T. McDonald III. “As one of the few serving health professionals to serve in the Legislature, I am keenly aware of the practices that fueled the crisis and, as a former mayor and current lawmaker, I still know better the impacts of this crisis. has had on individuals, their families and our communities.
“The $ 1.5 billion guaranteed by Attorney General James will be spent wisely and appropriately in education, treatment and recovery, in accordance with the legislation I sponsored to ensure that there is a dedicated fund for the money obtained. While the money will not bring back the lives lost or heal the pain suffered, I am confident that the proper use of the funding will help prevent more death and pain for many families. “
“I am delighted to join Attorney General Letitia James as she visits the Hope and Healing Recovery Center in Hudson Falls,” said Carrie Woerner, State Assembly Member. “The opioid crisis has worsened in our region during the pandemic. I am grateful to the Attorney General for his work in prosecuting the manufacturers and distributors of these highly addictive drugs and in securing opioid settlement funds.
“As the sponsor of the legislation that created the ‘lock box’ for these funds, I have worked closely with advocates and recovery warriors who have the knowledge to know what programs are needed to meet the challenges. challenges. The resources that will now be available to fund prevention, treatment, harm reduction and recovery services will make a significant difference in the lives of people living with the disease of addiction.
“I am proud that Albany County was one of the first in the state to take on manufacturers and distributors for the damage caused by highly addictive opioids. But having an ally in the person of Attorney General James, who immediately filed a lawsuit on New York’s behalf once she took office, has helped really hold Big Pharma accountable, ”said Daniel McCoy, director. from Albany County. “We lost nearly 100 residents of Albany County in 2020 alone as COVID-19 dumped gasoline on the overdose fire. These regulations will not bring our loved ones back, but the steps we have taken will change the way these companies do business, and this funding will be used for treatment, recovery and education programs that can help prevent future tragedies. .
“The resources obtained from these settlements will go a long way in providing care for those suffering from drug addiction, and I thank Attorney General James for continuing this fight for the communities who need it most,” said the County District Attorney of ‘Albany, David Soares.
“The opioid epidemic has been devastating to our communities across Albany County,” said Albany County Legislative Assembly Speaker Andrew Joyce. “The Albany County Legislature recognizes that in order to prevent more overdoses, we need to be proactive. That is why we are working on legislation that would provide for the safe disposal of opioids. We need to make it more difficult for those who do not need these drugs to get these drugs, it is the first step in fighting this epidemic. I am happy to see that these funds are going where they are needed most. “
“I commend Attorney General James for his persistence in holding opioid producers accountable for the torment caused to so many New York families and others,” Albany County Sheriff Craig Apple said. “These settlements will undoubtedly save lives through education, awareness and recovery efforts. “
“We are honored that New York Attorney General Letitia James is visiting Elizabeth House of Hope House, a 16-bed intensive residential program for women, located in Troy, New York,” said Kevin M, Connally, Executive Director of Hope House, Inc. “Attorney General James is visiting this program as part of her ‘HealNY’ tour where she will begin providing up to $ 1.5 billion to fight the opioid epidemic. These funds were raised from various opioid manufacturers and distributors who were responsible for the devastating opioid epidemic. We are grateful to Attorney General James for his tireless efforts to help New Yorkers fight the opioid epidemic, especially amid the COVID-19 pandemic, which has had a tremendous impact on those in need. quality processing services. “
Separately, but linked to his opioid work, last February Attorney General James co-led a coalition of nearly every attorney general in the country in issuing more than $ 573 million – of which more than $ 32 million was Intended for New York State – towards opioid treatment and reduction in an agreement and consent judgment with McKinsey & Company.