Every year, thousands of Texans die from opioid drug overdoses. In 2018, the exact number was 67,367. This number has social and economic impacts on individuals and families, but it also has implications for the surrounding professional medical community.
In recent years, for example, many overdose deaths have led to lawsuits against prescribers. For some doctors, the results have been devasting, with court rulings leading not only to high fines and damaged reputations, but also a loss of licensure. A new settlement may offer hope to help tackle this difficult topic for everyone.
Texas settlement may help combat addiction
In July of this year, three of the biggest drug distributors in the United States reached a $26 billion settlement in a landmark case about the companies’ roles in the nationwide opioid epidemic. After the decision, the court gave states 30 days to join the settlement. Shortly after, Texas signed on. As a result, many local governments throughout the state may receive up to $1.5 billion. The majority of these funds will go toward efforts to end addiction.
Funding will depend on local participation
According to officials, the towns and cities that receive funding will depend upon local participation. Localities have until January of next year to opt-in. Physicians and other health professionals with addiction patients and who want to see their areas participate in the settlement can contact their local representatives for more information. If your city or town decides to join and receives funding, there will then be policy efforts to put the money toward opioid abatement.
Ending opioid addiction is a community effort that requires the voices of physicians. Speaking up not only helps countless patients facing addiction but also many health care professionals, too.