More S.C. counties are moving to sue drug companies they hold responsible for the state’s opioid-abuse crisis.
Spartanburg County Council voted Monday to sue pharmaceutical companies over rising opioid deaths, the Spartanburg Herald-Journal reports.
Both Anderson and Greenville counties are considering similar action. The Greenville News reports Greenville County Council hired Spartanburg attorney John White Tuesday to investigate the grounds for filing its own suit over the crisis.
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In Anderson, the Independent Mail reports County Council chairman Tommy Dunn encouraged his colleagues to take similar action this week. Dunn said Anderson County may take action separate from the other counties.
“I would encourage each county to do it,” Spartanburg County Councilman David Britt told the Independent Mail. “We are the ones bearing the brunt, all the way from our hospitals to the David Forrester Treatment Center – they are dealing with all these issues as well as the sheriff’s department, the coroner.”
Statewide, there were a reported 616 opioid-related deaths in 2016.
In Spartanburg County, which saw 36 opioid deaths in 2016. Council chairman Jeff Horton said the anti-overdose drug Narcan had to be administered 454 times in 2016 and 311 times in 2015 – a 46 percent increase.
In Anderson County, seven out of every 1,000 babies is born with an opioid addiction, the Independent Mail reports.