Proposed Plan For Opioid Crisis Could Cost Over $123 Million

Monday, June 24th 2019, 7:25 pm
By: News On 6

Johnson & Johnson attorneys said June 24th that the state of Oklahoma's proposal to fix the opioid epidemic is too expensive, with costs that go "far beyond" painkiller addiction and abuse.

The Johnson & Johnson attorney had a lot of questions for one of the women responsible for creating this plan.

He asked Jessica Hawkins if she had any idea how expensive it would be to hire all the personnel listed throughout the plan for just one year

Hawkins talked about the need to hire everyone from clinicians to school counselors.

The J&J attorney said for just one year's salary for all the new hires, it would cost more than $123 million.         

Hawkins said this is necessary to fix the crisis and pointed out the drug company hasn't come up with any better ideas.

"When you treat 35,000 people for opioid use disorder, you're hiring people and you're treating people with clinicians," Hawkins said. "When you're conducting prevention and putting school counselors in schools, those are people and salaries."

"My understanding is that the defendants have not presented a plan, so this is the only plan to abate the opioid crisis in Oklahoma," Hawkins said.

Hawkins repeatedly said it should be up to pharmaceutical companies, not the taxpayers, to foot the bill for fixing this epidemic.