An unlikely alliance is finally being forged to combat Louisiana's opioid epidemic.

Gov. John Bel Edwards and Attorney General Jeff Landry  have agreed to coordinate efforts in the state litigation against opioid manufacturers.

Landry's office will take over the primary responsibility for the suit filed by the Louisiana Department of Health (LDH) in the 19th JDC. Landry will also coordinate with other state agencies to pursue claims the state has as a result of the opioid crisis.

LDH is seeking damages and penalties for the amounts it has already paid for excessive opioid prescriptions and treatment costs as a result of those prescriptions. The lawsuit alleges that the drug companies engaged in fraudulent marketing regarding the risks and benefits of prescription opioids, which helped fuel Louisiana's opioid epidemic.

"The opioid crisis is sweeping the nation; and this is due, in large part, to the drug companies that mislead physicians and the public," Governor Edwards said. "A coordinated effort from the State will produce the best results for the families who have lost loved ones to this epidemic. Justice for them is our number one priority."

"The Opioid Epidemic is one of the most challenging and complex problems facing our State," General Landry said. "Tackling this problem will take a concerted effort on many fronts and joining together to coordinate this legal effort is in the best interest of the people of Louisiana."

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