Nassau County continues to hold Big Pharma accountable in the courts for the wave of destruction that their highly addictive opioid drugs have unleashed upon families and children in every part of America.
On Monday, Nov. 7, Nassau County took the first legislative step toward approving a $68.25 million settlement with Actavis LLC and Actavis Pharma, Inc., Watson Laboratories, Inc., Anda Inc., Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, Ltd. and Teva Pharmaceuticals USA. Once this settlement is approved by the full Legislature and the County Executive - which I anticipate will occur later this month - it will supplement the $70.4 million Nassau County has already received through various Big Pharma settlements.
However, if you are a part of a local organization that is delivering life-saving treatment, education and prevention resources in this battle, time is running out to respond to Nassau County’s Request for Expressions of Interest (RFEI) to receive a portion of these resources ahead of a Monday, Nov. 21 deadline.
Drawing from the $70.4 million currently at Nassau’s disposal, County Executive Blakeman in mid-September announced his administration’s plans for distributing $15 million/year for the next four years to qualified agencies that provide addiction prevention, treatment and/or recovery services. From that allotment, approximately $2.4 million/year was immediately earmarked, with the lion’s share going to Nassau University Medical Center. The remaining $12.6 million/year will be awarded to agencies that respond to the RFEI that is closing on Monday, Nov. 21.
Above and beyond the County Executive’s announced plans, there is still approximately $10.4 million that has not been specifically designated, and the Teva Pharmaceutical settlement dollars will add significantly to that sum. While I have consistently expressed my frustration with the slow pace of allocating these funds, this influx of new resources on the horizon will give us a golden opportunity to proactively plan for how we can get these life-saving resources where they need to be as expeditiously as possible.
All applications must be submitted in the manner described in “Section F - Proposal Submission Instructions” of the RFEI and postmarked no later than Monday, Nov. 21. Interested agencies who complete the RFEI must mail hard copies of their response to the authorized contact person:
Omayra Perez, R.- L.C.S.W.
Director of Community Services
Nassau County Office of Mental Health, Chemical Dependency and Developmental Disabilities Services
60 Charles Lindbergh Blvd., Suite 200
Uniondale, N.Y. 11530
Phone: (516) 227-7057
Fax: (516) 227-5906
Click here to read the request for expressions of interest
Delia DeRiggi-Whitton, of Glen Cove, was first elected to the Nassau County Legislature in 2011. She represents the 11th District in the Nassau County Legislature and currently serves as the Ranking Member of the Legislature’s Committee on Health & Social Services.