overdoses

The New York State Health Department plans to make medical marijuana available to more New Yorkers. Opioid use will be the newest addition to the list of qualifying conditions under the state’s medical marijuana program.

Amherst is joining local governments that are suing opioid manufacturers. The lawsuit argues the legal drugs are not only costing governments money, but lives.

While the numbers make it clear that an opioid epidemic is raging across the United States, the origins of that epidemic are subject to debate. New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman - and 40 of his fellow state attorneys general - want to fully explore the role played by four major manufacturers of prescription opioids.

Catholic Health

Catholic Health officially gave up Monday and told residents of a small Amherst neighborhood there would not be a drug treatment clinic next door. The new plan is to shift to an office park in Audubon.

Update 3:35 pm August 10: Two days after making a few general remarks about the opioid crisis, President Trump on Thursday called it "a national emergency" and said his administration would be drawing up papers to make it official.

"We're going to spend a lot of time, a lot of effort and a lot of money on the opioid crisis," Trump told reporters at his golf club in Bedminster, N.J.

In Prince George's County, Md., every first responder carries naloxone, the drug that can reverse an opioid overdose.

"We carry it in our first-in bags," says Bryan Spies, the county's battalion chief in charge of emergency services. "So whenever we arrive at a patient's side, it's in the bag, along with things like glucose, aspirin and oxygen."

A new report says Ontario is having as much a problem with opioids as New York State.

WBFO's Mike Desmond

On a cold, windy and snowy night, around two dozen people were inside the Erie County Emergency Operations Center talking about giving life, using naloxone to overcome the fatal overdose effects of opioids. As fatalities have continued to rise, the number of people wanting to learn how to use the drug spray also has increased.