Posted inCrime and Courts, Health, News

Colorado unveils plan to distribute $400 million in opioid settlement money

Roughly $400 million in settlement money expected to be secured by Colorado from drug companies sued for their alleged role in the opioid epidemic would be split between state and local governments under a tentative deal unveiled Thursday that calls for the money to be spent on building treatment facilities and bolstering prevention and education […]

Posted inCrime and Courts, Health, News, Politics and Government

Colorado expected to receive at least $300 million through opioid-crisis settlement — if local governments approve the deal

Colorado is expected to receive at least $300 million under a tentative settlement with major drug distributors and a manufacturer for their role in the opioid epidemic, if local governments sign on to the deal, state Attorney General Phil Weiser said Wednesday.  The funding from the settlement, worth $26 billion nationwide, would be paid out […]

Posted inHealth, News

Colorado’s program to stop patients from “doctor shopping” for opioids hasn’t been working, audit finds

A Colorado program that allows doctors, dentists, pharmacists and others to check a database before issuing prescriptions for certain drugs hasn’t stopped so-called “doctor shopping” for opioids and sedatives and requires legislation to compel prescribers to register with the database and to use it. That’s according to the Office of the State Auditor, which examined Colorado’s Prescription […]

Posted inColoradans, Crime and Courts, Health, News

How fake blue pills killed people on the Western Slope and led to Colorado’s first counterfeit opioid death conviction

The pill was light blue and stamped with “30” and “M,” just like a real 30mg oxycodone. Except it was a counterfeit, cooked up in an illegal Mexican lab rather than precisely measured in a pharmaceutical factory. The fentanyl it contained was potent enough to kill Jonathan Ellington in a matter of seconds. He died […]

Posted inOpinion, Opinion Columns

Opinion: A bill in the Colorado legislature might have saved my son

My son’s story may resonate with many others who have gone through the same experience. It started with a broken ankle.  He was given opiates for pain alleviation and quickly became addicted to the doctor-prescribed medication. Not long after that, his girlfriend ended up finding him between the couch and the coffee table, unconscious.  My […]

Posted inColoradans, Crime and Courts, Health, News

Counterfeit opioid pills made in Mexico pushed Colorado into a third, deadly wave of the opioid crisis

Colorado has entered the third wave — the deadliest wave so far — in the opioid epidemic, as counterfeit opioid pills made to look like real oxycodone or Xanax are supplanting heroin in state drug-smuggling operations, the regional DEA office has warned. The evidence is in the overdose statistics, which skyrocketed in 2020. Overdoses due […]

Posted inColoradans, Health, News, Politics and Government

Fentanyl overdoses are surging in Colorado as the powerful opioid is disguised as other drugs

For the past several years, law enforcement and public health officials have warned that fentanyl — a potent, synthetic opioid powder causing a spike in overdoses on the coasts — would soon arrive in Colorado.  It’s clearly here, and the statistics for 2020 reveal a drastic jump in use of the drug considered 10 times […]

Posted inBusiness, Crime and Courts, Health, News

Federal prosecutors in Colorado, across the U.S. sue Walmart over role in opioid crisis

By Michael Balsamo, The Associated Press and Jesse Paul, The Colorado Sun WASHINGTON — The Justice Department is suing Walmart, alleging the company unlawfully dispensed controlled substances through its pharmacies, helping to fuel the opioid crisis in America. The civil complaint being filed Tuesday points to the role Walmart’s pharmacies may have played in the […]

Posted inColoradans, COVID, Health

Coronavirus moved some substance treatment services online in Colorado — possibly permanently

Kara Bonham was already struggling with alcohol consumption, depression and anxiety when the pandemic forced her life into overdrive. She had a high-stress job as a first responder in Fort Collins. On top of that, her older sister, who also struggles with alcohol, had recently been diagnosed with end-stage liver failure. As Bonham saw it, […]

Posted inBusiness, Crime and Courts, Health, News

Jonathan Sackler, co-owner of Purdue Pharma and target of Colorado lawsuit, dies

STAMFORD, Conn. — Jonathan Sackler, one of the owners of OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma, has died, the company confirmed. Sackler died June 30, according to a court filing. He was 65 and the cause of death was cancer. He was the son of Raymond Sackler, one the brothers who bought drug company Purdue Frederick in […]