Senator Clarence Lam | WYPR

Senator Clarence Lam

Rachel Baye

The state Senate has given preliminary approval to legislation aimed at tamping down on prescription drug costs. But the Senate version is significantly weaker than the version that passed the House last month.

Daniel Carl Torsch Foundation

Dan Torsch’s older brother John remembers. It was about 17 years ago. 

 

“I can trace his addiction back to one 100 milligram morphine pill,” Torsch said.

 

They were teenagers, partying in Ocean City. Drinking, smoking weed, snorting cocaine. John offered his brother the morphine pill. The next morning John said he woke up with a hangover. 

 

“All I wanted to do was lay on the beach, maybe smoke a joint and eat some food,” Torsch said. “What do you think the very first thing Dan asked me when he woke up? ‘You got any more of those pills?’”

AP Photo/Patrick Sison

Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski is considering appointing an Opioid Czar to be the point person as the county grapples with the second-highest rate of fatal opioid overdoses in Maryland. This comes as the county is being criticized for not doing enough to address a problem Olszewski says is ravaging parts of the county.