The City of Huntsville received nearly $3 million in a lawsuit against pharmaceutical manufacturers over the ongoing opioid crisis, and will distribute the settlement proceeds from the opioid lawsuit among local agencies battling this epidemic.
The City of Huntsville is among multiple plaintiffs in a series of class action lawsuits over the opioid crisis. Here’s who is receiving these funds and how this situation will be handled moving forward:
Organizations battling the opioid crisis
A statement from the City of Huntsville said Huntsville joined opioid-related class-action lawsuits and will receive nearly $2 million over 10 years as part of a settlement from McKesson and a one-time payment of $982,235 from Janssen.
The City is a plaintiff in other unsettled litigation against opioid manufacturers and distributors.
Organizations set to receive the funds (pending City Council approval) are:
- First Stop: $810,000
- WellStone: $750,000
- Huntsville Hospital Foundation: $850,000
The organizations were chosen based on their areas of expertise with opioid use disorders.
“We looked at agencies we already partner with that also have programs geared toward fighting the opioid crisis, specifically those that combat homelessness or serve low-income populations. The settlements have guidelines that state they should benefit those who have been directly impacted by opioid abuse.”Penny Smith, Huntsville finance director
Agencies receiving the opioid settlement allocations are required to submit utilization reports on how the funds are benefiting the community.
Funds for Naloxone as well
A portion of the proceeds will also be set aside for the purchase of Naloxone – also known as Narcan – to treat overdose patients. Naloxone temporarily reverses the effects of an overdose from opioids.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, Naloxone can be given safely to people of all ages, from infants to older adults. This includes an adolescent or young adult who may have unintentionally taken an opioid.