A recent study found that despite billions of dollars spent annually on marketing and ad buys, most pharmaceutical drugs don’t work that well on patients who take them.
A legal battle that has been ongoing for years concluded recently. Two Ohio counties that were inundated with far more opioid pills than residents needed will now receive $650 million from pharmacy corporations actively involved in doling out addictive opioid painkillers to community members.
In the now two-decade-long opioid epidemic in the U.S., pharmaceutical opioid manufacturers, pharmacies, and doctors have all come under fire for the role they played in the surge of opioid addiction and death. One group, previously unnoticed and only just now coming under investigation, bears mentioning. As reports have shown, pharmaceutical distributors had just as critical a role in the opioid epidemic as other bad actors.
Several major pharma litigations are currently making their way through U.S. courts. One such case just came to a close, unfortunately releasing several pharma giants from all legal liability regarding their role in the devastating opioid epidemic.
New Developments in the Sackler Case Suggest More Needs to be Done to Hold Pharma Magnates Accountable
In the late-1990s and early-2000s, pharmaceutical manufacturers like Purdue Pharma aggressively marketed addictive drugs such as OxyContin, pushing doctors to prescribe them. Today, though it’s known that these companies helped create America’s opioid epidemic, the owners of the companies appear poised to escape accountability.
The litigation of Purdue Pharma/the Sacklers is now over. One of the key aspects of the case that deserves full scrutiny is that Purdue’s owners threatened to withdraw settlement funds if they did not achieve personal immunity. In the end, they won.
An October 2019 article in USA Today focused on how critical it is that opioid lawsuit settlement dollars are used to treat addiction. This should be a given, to use settlements from pharma companies to treat addicts (especially considering that many addicts would not be addicts were it not for prescription painkillers).
Within the opioid addiction epidemic in this country, several types of drugs play a role. But opiates take the lead for causing the most harm, for taking the most lives, and for creating the largest public health burden.
In July 2019, Pharmaceutical company Reckitt Benckiser Group settled a federal lawsuit that they fraudulently marketed their addiction treatment drug Suboxone. They’ll pay a huge fine but why doesn’t this settlement actually result in justice?
In August 2019, Cleveland County Judge Thad Balkman ordered Johnson & Johnson and their subsidiary, Janssen Pharmaceuticals to pay Oklahoma $572 million for the harm their products cause. When the settlement is paid, what will the benefits actually be? Will Oklahomans actually benefit?