July 6, 2022
New Jersey is preparing to receive its share of the $26 billion federal opioid settlement that was announced in March of this year. Of the $26 billion settlement, New Jersey is set to receive $641 million in total from Johnson & Johnson, which manufactured opioids, and the country's three largest pharmaceutical distributors, McKesson, Cardinal Health, and AmerisourceBergen.
The total settlement amount for New Jersey will be split down the middle with half going to the State of New Jersey and the other half going to local governments throughout the state. The company tasked with serving as the settlement administrator, Brown Green PLC, reported that settlement funds are expected to be received by the state and localities starting this month, July.
Christi Peace, Deputy Press Secretary for Governor Phil Murphy, was quoted on njspotlightnews.com saying, "Decisions about how to spend the funds will be made on an ongoing basis, with a thoughtful and strategic approach that responds to evolving needs and evidence-based best practices . . . The administration will continue to implement other programs and services through additional funding streams as well, as part of our ongoing efforts to combat the opioid epidemic in New Jersey."
Regarding where the funds will be spent and the state of the opioid epidemic in New Jersey, Kendria McWilliams, New Jersey Mental Health Institute Board Chair and CEO of Maryville Addiction Treatment Center, was quoted saying, "Large and growing numbers of people continue to use substances and suffer from the disease. There is a growing need for people to be served in terms of their mental health disorders, a growing number of adolescents are suffering from opiate-use and stimulant-use disorders. So there is absolutely a continued need to fund at increasing levels providers who provide treatment and medication-assisted support for people suffering from opioid use disorders."
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