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County expects to receive $3 million from state opioid settlement

Adams County expects to receive about $3 million in settlement money from claims against manufacturers and distributors of prescription opioids as the result of a statewide settlement.

The money includes about $695,000 the county will receive for dropping its claim and joining the consolidated state suit.

County Solicitor Molly Mudd said the funds were expected as soon as August and would be used for a variety of projects to help people with opioid addiction. 

“The board is considering a wide range of options. We’re exploring useful, supportive services for families and individuals in need that we can deliver quickly,” said County Commissioner Marty Qually. “Families with addicts need all kinds of support, and particularly single parents.

The Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro is spearheading the settlement with 3 major distributors and one manufacturer, Johnson & Johnson Janssen.

The expected settlement is based on the expectation that each county with an existing suit will also join in the consolidated suit. Mudd said the class action suit was similar to one brought by states against tobacco companies in the 1970s, but that the funds were guaranteed to be used for remediation.

“The states realized there were issues, said Qually. “It’s not just the companies manufacturing but also distributors. The impact was felt in the counties; their police departments and EMS systems. We can deal with real expenses and use the money to strengthen programs.”

The amount received is based on an accounting from the county on four factors:

Overdose deaths in 2015-2019

Hospitalizations related to opioid overdoses

EMS Naproxone administrations.

Adjusted total morphine milligram equivalent (MMEs) dispensed by physicians in the county. 

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Charles Stangor is Gettysburg Connection's Publisher and Editor in Chief.

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