Weekly Feature



2018-10-11 / Local News

Investment in private sector opioid response sees success


Joseph Lorigo Joseph Lorigo During the Erie County Legislature’s recent Health and Human Services Committee meeting, legislators received an update on 2017 opioid funding from Health Commissioner Gale Burstein and Mental Health Commissioner Mike Ranney.

According to their report, the number of opioid-related overdose deaths in Erie County has declined this year. Additionally, Legislator Joseph Lorigo said his initiative to use county money to fund private sector opioid response initiatives has seen success.

Lorigo said Evergreen Health Services, the International Institute of Buffalo and Neighborhood Health Center each received funding following an RFP process. Since then, funding has been used to expand treatment options, establish a mobile outreach program and provide various education and training opportunities.

Each of the three organizations are now self-sustaining and will be able to continue their efforts without using any additional tax dollars.

“This is a prime example of how government can invest in the private sector and achieve measurable results without having to continually spend taxpayer dollars,” Lorigo said. “I’m hopeful we can look for similar opportunities in the future in order to support important initiatives such as solving the opioid crisis while cutting down on county costs.”

Return to top