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opioid addiction

Dr. William Yarborough, right, speaks with patient Richard Potts at the Oklahoma Pain and Wellness Center in Tulsa.
Jackie Fortier / StateImpact Oklahoma

William Yarborough walks across the hall from his office to an exam room. His Hawaiian shirt and matching khaki pants aren’t the typical doctor’s garb.

Quinton Chandler / StateImpact Oklahoma

It’s been three weeks since Sarah Sinkinson last saw her children and she’s ready for a visit from her daughter, Madeline. Sinkinson lights up as her daughter is escorted into a small visitation room and sits down at a desk opposite her.

Oklahoma Opioid Deaths Continue To Rise

Mar 7, 2018
Jackie Fortier / StateImpact Oklahoma

New data released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggests drug overdose deaths declined in some states — but not in Oklahoma.

Jackie Fortier / StateImpact Oklahoma

Drug overdose deaths in Oklahoma increased 91 percent over the last decade and a half, prompting the state to form a task force charged with a daunting goal: Brainstorm a plan to guide the state out of an opioid epidemic that kills three Oklahomans nearly every day.


Reveal: Too Many Pills

Jan 29, 2018
PHOTO ILLUSTRATION BY MICHAEL I SCHILLER FOR REVEAL. PHOTO OF PILL BOTTLE AND HANDS BY FRANKIE LEON VIA FLICKR

Drug overdoses now are the leading cause of death among Americans under 50, largely thanks to a surge in opioid use. Although heroin and fentanyl have dominated the headlines in recent years, the problem started with a flood of prescription painkillers, distributed by some of the country’s biggest corporations.

Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter
Claire Donnelly / KGOU

Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter is suing more than a dozen U.S. drug manufacturers.

As the nation’s opioid addiction and overdose crisis grows, the Cherokee Nation is launching the first-ever lawsuit against drug distributors that will be litigated in a tribal court.

The suit takes on companies including pharmacies CVS Health, Walgreens and Wal-Mart, and drug distributors Cardinal Health, Inc. and McKesson Corporation, alleging that they didn’t properly monitor prescription painkillers, which eventually “flooded” every Cherokee county.

Oklahoma Creates State Commission To Address Opioid Abuse

Apr 27, 2017
Oklahoma Attorney General's Office

Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter announced the formation of a state task force to combat opioid addiction on Wednesday.  

The Oklahoma Commission on Opioid Abuse will consist of nine members, including lawmakers, law enforcement, a dentist, a pharmacist, a nurse and a doctor. It will consider policy changes to prevent, treat and intervene in opioid addiction.

Cherokee Nation Sues Opioid Providers In Tribal Court

Apr 21, 2017
RambergMediaImages / Flickr Creative Commons

The Cherokee Nation is seeking restitution for a drug abuse epidemic that has disproportionately affected members of its tribe.

The nation filed a lawsuit against major pharmaceutical companies and pharmacy retailers in tribal court on Thursday, alleging that these companies have unjustly profited off of selling medically unnecessary amounts of prescription opioids.