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'Frightening increase' in Ulster Co. opioid deaths since 2014

Dec 12, 2022 12:45 am

MidHudson News is reporting deaths in Ulster County from opioid overdoses have increased by 407 percent since 2014, and 11 percent between 2020 and 2021. The county received $1.3 million of a $1.47 million in opioid settlement funds in 2022, County Comptroller March Gallagher said. Those funds were derived from settlements negotiated by Attorney General Letitia James in four separate cases. “The comptroller’s office recommends that 100 percent of the funds received from settlement agreements be dedicated to the prevention and treatment of opioids, even those funds that are unrestricted, given the frightening increase in opioid deaths in Ulster County,” Gallagher said. She said the opioid epidemic continues to take “a serious financial toll on Ulster County government, business, and families. These first settlement proceeds are but a fraction of the human toll our community has suffered.” The funds are the first of a series of payments expected for settlements with distributors, manufacturers and pharmacies. The distributors' settlement will continue over the next 16 years; the Janssen Pharmaceutical settlement for the next six years. The County also received one-time payments from Allergan Pharmaceutical and one distributors’ settlement and a settlement payment from Endo Pharmaceutical is anticipated by year's end. A portion of the funds received must be used for approved uses such as treatment, prevention, training, research and first responder support. Read the full story at MidHudsonNews [dot] com.

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