Next Step For Oregon Opioid Settlement Fund

Oregon Opioid Settlement: Oregon is slowly beginning to receive settlement funds from a lawsuit over the state’s opioid crisis. Captain Lee Eby of the Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office will help distribute the money. He is the vice chair of the Oregon Opioid Settlement’s Board for Treatment, Prevention, and Recovery.

Next Step For Oregon Opioid Settlement Fund

On January 4, the board gathered for its first meeting of 2019. Eby believes that education is currently the board’s top priority. In a meeting on Wednesday, state officials listened to presentations from addiction and recovery specialists before deciding how to allocate the state’s share of the settlement money. If we want to make good decisions for Oregonians, we need to be as well-informed as possible.

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A worldwide litigation settlement against four firms was struck in 2021 for their participation in the nation’s opioid crisis, which has killed more than 564,000 people since 2000, according to CDC data, and will result in Oregon collecting around $325 million over the following 18 years.

According to the Oregon Health Authority, the state will receive 45% of the opioid settlement money and local governments will receive the remaining 55%. The remaining 45%, or around $147 million spread out over 18 years, is being facilitated by Eby and the OSPTR advisory board.

Next Step For Oregon Opioid Settlement Fund
Next Step For Oregon Opioid Settlement Fund

“I hope to affect change in the world. For that reason, I believe the board can effectively use the allocated monies “When asked why he decided to join the board, Eby answered the following.

It was announced in December 2021 by Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum that an agreement was nearing between the state and Oregon’s cities and counties regarding the distribution of Oregon’s portion of the historic $26 billion national settlement with the three largest distributors of opioids (McKesson, AmerisourceBergen, and Cardinal Health) and the drug manufacturer Johnson & Johnson.

Throughout the state of Oregon, families and communities have been hit hard by the opioid crisis, and Rosenblum argued that these corporations are to blame.

The 18-person OSPTR board is responsible for determining how the funds should be allocated within the parameters specified by the state government and the national settlement. According to the Oregon Health Authority’s website, the settlement stipulates that the money be spent on specific programs to help those struggling with opioid addiction. It is forbidden to put them to any other use.

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The OHA lists a number of permissible uses for this money, such as, but not limited to:

  • The increasing availability of harm-reduction tools like naloxone and clean needles is crucial.
  • Growing access to pharmacological interventions
  • Providing a variety of services to help people get better, such as residential treatment centers, outpatient clinics, and sober living environments
  • Increasing access to therapy and rehabilitation for pregnant and postpartum women.
  • Increasing access to rehabilitation programs for those involved with or leaving the criminal justice system
  • Programs for the Education and Training in the Prevention of Opioid Abuse

By contrast, “dealing with it downstream can be more economically responsible and slightly more efficient than focusing on education and prevention,” as he put it.

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