The problem is so bad that eight of the region’s district attorneys general are suing opioid manufacturers on behalf of local babies born with NAS in 24 counties. The suits are two of the latest to be filed in a mounting nationwide effort to drag drug-makers and distributors into courtrooms.

Sullivan County District Attorney General Barry Staubus, a plaintiff in one of the suits, said the flood of prescription opioids into the region has had a “tragic” effect.

“When you see those babies scream, you see them claw, you see them shake, it makes the problem real,” Staubus said. “It’s not an abstract policy problem. It’s not a lawsuit. It’s a baby that never had a chance.”