Nassau County Executive Laura Curran stands in front of State Supreme Court in Central Islip
CENTRAL ISLIP, NY (July 20, 2021) - Nassau County Executive Laura Curran announced the largest opioid settlement in United States history today as Nassau County, Suffolk County and New York State agree to settle more than $1 billion in opioid related lawsuits with drug manufacturers, distributors and pharmacies. Nassau County will receive up to $115 million in total as the trial continues.
Drug distributors AmerisourceBergen, Cardinal Health and McKesson will join Johnson & Johnson and 4 chain pharmacies – Walgreens, Walmart, CVS and Rite Aid to pay up to a combined $115 million to Nassau County and more than $1 billion to New York State to resolve claims that the companies helped fuel the opioid epidemic.
“Before Nassau went to trial, I made a promise that we would make these companies pay,” said Nassau County Executive Laura Curran. “While no amount of money will replace the countless lives that have been affected, we can save future lives by expanding our support network and increasing funding for mental health and addiction programs, along with prevention efforts.”
Under the terms of the settlement, opioid distributors AmerisourceBergen, Cardinal Health and McKesson will be required to create a first-of-its-kind clearinghouse to account for shipments of opioids to other distributors in order to detect stop and report suspicion of abuse. For the first time ever, drug distributors will be held accountable for their shipments and be required to collect data, set shipment limits and follow patterns and trends in customer data to evaluate whether their products are being abused.
“No longer can distributors skirt the law by saying that once it leaves their factory, they are no longer culpable, said Nassau County Executive Laura Curran. “Long Island has paved the way for the rest of the country.”
Nassau County will also be named as one of the 17 members on the National Enforcement Committee, which is responsible for overseeing negotiations, outreach, and implementation of a potential National Global Settlement.
Nassau County is still in trial alongside the New York Attorney General’s Office and Suffolk County against drug manufactures Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, Allergan PLC, Endo International, and Anda Pharmaceutical Products.
“We have confidence in the judicial system and are very optimistic we will hold these companies responsible at trial,” said Curran.
The settlement by Nassau County will be pending approval in the Nassau County Legislature.