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Cuomo Creates Task Force To Combat Opioid Crisis

Toby Talbot

On Tuesday Governor Andrew Cuomo (D-NY) announced the appointment of a task force aimed at ending what he called a crisis of heroin and opioid addiction plaguing families and communities in New York.

The group is chaired by Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul and Arlene Gonzalez-Sanchez, commissioner of the New York State Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services.

The other 21 members include representatives from health care, drug treatment, advocacy, law enforcement and education.

They're expected to hold public listening sessions and develop a statewide coordinated plan.

State efforts so far include expanding insurance coverage for treatment and a law requiring drug prescribers to consult a state database to check patient prescription histories. Officials credit that for a 90 percent decrease in "doctor shoppers" seeking multiple opioid prescriptions.

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