ARIZONA NEWS

Maricopa County signs onto settlement with drug companies over nation’s opioid epidemic

Oct 20, 2021, 4:00 PM
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)...
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)

PHOENIX (AP) — Maricopa County has become the first local government in Arizona to sign onto a massive settlement agreement with pharmaceutical companies over the nation’s opioid epidemic.

The county Board of Supervisors voted unanimously Wednesday to approve the settlement, which is expected to bring the county about $80 million of Arizona’s anticipated allocation, which could reach $550 million or more.

In Arizona, the state, all 15 counties and nearly 100 cities and towns can sign on to the $26 billion settlement between pharmaceutical companies and government entities around the country. The settlement involving Johnson & Johnson as well as three pharmaceutical distributors was announced last summer. The money must be used to address costs associated with the opioid epidemic.

Nothing can compensate for the pain caused by opioid addiction and death, but the settlement money can help alleviate the burden on taxpayers, Maricopa County Attorney Alister Adel said in a news conference.

“Throwing money at a problem doesn’t just fix it, but it does get our community off on a journey now to get us that much closer to healing the devastation,” Adel said.

By signing onto the national settlement, Maricopa County agrees to drop its own lawsuit against the pharmaceutical companies. The county has not settled with Purdue Pharma, maker of OxyContin, which is in bankruptcy proceedings.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

(Flickr File Photo/Ryan Boren)...
Griselda Zetino

Phoenix Children’s doctor: Croup becoming more common among kids with COVID-19

A doctor at Phoenix Children’s Hospital wants parents to be aware of a loud, barking-like cough known as croup that’s showing up among children infected with the omicron variant of COVID-19.
5 hours ago
(Pexels Photo)...
Taylor Tasler

Homeless young adults in Arizona remain at risk for human trafficking while resources are depleted

As homeless young adults in Arizona are faced with the risk of being trafficked, funding to help them is almost nonexistent in Maricopa County.
5 hours ago
(Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images)...
KTAR.com

Arizona House bill seeks to impose limits on taking video of police

A proposed Arizona House bill to outlaw close-up video recordings of police actions is meant to protect officers and civilians alike, said its sponsor.
5 hours ago
(AP Photo/Marta Lavandier, File)...
KTAR.com

Phoenix metro sets record with workforce of 2.3 million at end of 2021

The Phoenix metro area had a record number of workers at the end of 2021, the city said in a Wednesday press release.
5 hours ago
(Pexels Photo)...
Associated Press

Arizona utility regulators reject new renewable energy rules for the second time in a year

Arizona's utility regulators have rejected new rules that would have drastically boosted the use of renewable energy for the second time in a year, drawing sharp reaction from clean energy advocates who said the decision leaves the state far behind what is needed to address climate change.
5 hours ago
David Whitaker (Pinal County Sheriff's Office Photo)...
KTAR.com

Arizona sex offender who hid in desert for 107 days sentenced to 25 years behind bars

A 42-year-old man who was accused of sexual contact with a minor and hid for more than 107 days in the desert before being arrested has been sentenced to 25 years in prison, authorities said.
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Arizona State University

This is the best year to get your MBA

Getting a master’s degree is a major commitment of time, energy, and money, so returning to school — even if you’re thinking about a part-time program that allows you to keep working — is one of the biggest decisions of your career.
(Facebook Photo/NHTSA)...
Sweet James

Upcoming holiday season is peak time for DUI arrests

The holiday season may be the most wonderful time of the year, but it’s also the most dangerous time of the year to be driving. That’s why it’s important to remember to call Sweet James Accident Attorneys if you’re injured or arrested because of a DUI accident.
...
DISC DESERT INSTITUTE FOR SPINE CARE

What you need to know about spine health

With 540 million people suffering from lower back pain, it remains the leading cause of long-term disability. That’s why World Spine Day on Oct. 16 will raise awareness about spinal health with its theme, BACK2BACK. “BACK2BACK will focus on highlighting ways in which people can help their spines by staying mobile, avoiding physical inactivity, not overloading […]
Maricopa County signs onto settlement with drug companies over nation’s opioid epidemic