Attorney General Coffman Working with Bipartisan Coalition of Attorneys General to Address the Opioid Crisis
Attorneys General evaluating what role opioid manufacturers played in national epidemic
DENVER– Attorney General Cynthia H. Coffman today joined her colleagues from around the country in announcing that a bipartisan coalition of a majority of Attorneys General are conducting an ongoing investigation to evaluate whether drug manufacturers have engaged in unlawful practices in the marketing and sale of opioids. While the Attorneys General are not releasing further details about the targets of the investigation, they are examining what role opioid manufacturers may have played in creating or prolonging this epidemic and will determine the appropriate course of action to collectively address the opioid crisis.
"Every day our country and state lose loved ones to the opioid epidemic,” said Attorney General Coffman. “My office understands that the fight against opioid addiction requires many partners. We will use the law as a sword and a shield to best serve those we represent. As a sword to hold accountable those who promote or sell opioids in violation of state law, and as a shield to protect the vulnerable struggling with addiction."
In Colorado, between 2002 and 2014 there was a 68 percent increase in the statewide rate of drug overdose deaths. Nationally, opioids were involved in 33,091 deaths in 2015, and opioid overdoses have quadrupled since 1999.[i]
Attorney General Coffman is the Chair of the Colorado Substance Abuse Trend and Response Task Force, and this year two committees from the task force collaborated with multiple partners, including the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment and the Rocky Mountain High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area, to produce the groundbreaking Heroin in Colorado report. The report was focused on examining the scope of the heroin crisis in Colorado and evaluating potential areas in need of critical response. A copy of that report can be found at http://www.corxconsortium.org/wp-content/uploads/Heroin-in-Colorado-FINAL-April-2017.pdf
Attorney General Coffman has also lead the highly successful Colorado Naloxone for Life Initiative, which is a statewide partnership to save lives with the opioid overdose reversal medication, Naloxone by providing training and access to the medication to law enforcement agencies and first responders across Colorado. To date the program has reported more than 170 overdose reversals. More information about the program can be found at https://coag.gov/press-room/press-releases/09-19-16
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Colorado Attorney General’s Office
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DateJune 15th, 2017