Attorney General Addresses PA Opioid Epidemic - Erie News Now | WICU & WSEE in Erie, PA

Attorney General Addresses PA Opioid Epidemic

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Pennsylvania's top law enforcement official stopped by Erie today, to discuss the opioid crisis.

Attorney General Josh Shapiro served as the keynote speaker at a public health and safety symposium at the Bayfront Sheraton Hotel.

Since Shapiro was sworn in, Shapiro says his office has arrested an average of three drug dealers per day.

Shapiro also expressed the need to change the mindset surrounding addiction and treatment.

In 2016, Shapiro said there were 5,000 drug-related deaths in Pennsylvania, with a total of 95 of those deaths happening in Erie County.

Shapiro says health insurance companies must improve coverage for addiction, to properly fight what he describes as the number one safety threat in Pennsylvania.
 

"We need to make sure that we get at the root cause of this, looking at the opioid painkillers that are in an influx in our community, making sure we hold doctors and pharmaceutical companies accountable, making sure we make treatment available, said Shapiro.  These are the kind of things we need to do if we are going to be able to deal with this crisis."

In 2016, Shapiro said Narcan saved at least 1,000 lives in Pennsylvania.

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