A coalition of medical societies and advocacy organizations is calling on local governments to use funds from settlements with opioid makers to prevent and treat addiction, STAT reports.
The coalition issued principles recommending local governments use medical evidence from the opioid crisis to guide spending decisions. They urged governments to fund programs that support young people and their families.
Local governments and tribal nations have filed 2,600 lawsuits against drug companies, wholesalers and retailers over their role in the opioid crisis. The value of the proceeds from the litigation could eventually amount to tens of billions of dollars in funds and donated products, the article notes.
“We are still deep in the midst of an overdose crisis,” Joshua Sharfstein, M.D., Vice Dean for Public Health Practice and Community Engagement at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, said in a statement. “We don’t want to see a repeat of what happened with the tobacco litigation settlements where the vast majority of the funds weren’t used to address the actual public health issue at hand.”