Audrey Dutton

(Idaho Capital Sun) Idaho has received more than $26 million in opioid settlement funds, according to Idaho Attorney General Lawrence Wasden.

The state last week received its final payment for this year. Wasden anticipates Idaho will receive a total of $128 million by the year 2040 as the state’s share of proceeds from three legal settlements and one bankruptcy. Potential future settlements could provide additional money, Wasden said in a press release.

The money is distributed to regional public health districts, cities, counties and state coffers. It can be used only for the purpose of fighting opioid addiction.

The distributions so far:

  • $12.1 million to the state
  • $5.8 million to Idaho’s seven public health districts
  • $8.1 million to cities and counties

“The payments we’ve received thus far allow state, regional and local governments to begin implementing the programs that will ultimately help our state recover from the addiction crisis,” Wasden said.

There are several ways for agencies and governments to use the money to combat Idaho’s opioid epidemic.

The funds can be spent on:

  • treatment of opioid use disorder
  • opioid abuse prevention
  • overdose and death prevention
  • supporting people who are in addiction treatment or recovery
  • screening and referral programs for people who need treatment
  • programs for people with opioid use disorder who are going through the criminal justice system
  • addressing opioid use in pregnancy
  • combating over-prescription and inappropriate opioid prescribing
  • research and training