Ohio attorney general sues 5 drugmakers over opiate crisis

Ohio attorney general sues 5 drugmakers over opiate crisis

Ohio attorney general sues 5 drugmakers over opiate crisis

It seeks damages to compensate the state for the additional costs of dealing with the ongoing epidemic, and refunds for OH consumers who allegedly paid for unnecessary opioid prescriptions for chronic pain.

Ohio's Attorney General Mike DeWine filed suit against five drug companies he says are responsible for the drug addiction crisis because they misled consumers.

"The lawsuit claims that five drugmakers - Purdue, which makes OxyContin, Endo, Johnson & Johnson [and its Janssen Pharmaceuticals subsidiary], Teva and Allergan - committed fraud and other offenses by knowingly downplaying the dangers of opioids, and by marketing the pills to patients who did not need them", David Crow reports for Financial Times.

She said Janssen has acted responsibly regarding its opioid pain medications, which are approved by the US Food and Drug Administration and carry FDA-mandated warnings on their labels about the drugs' known risks. There is also anecdotal evidence of the link between the use of prescription painkillers and dependency on illegal opioids such as heroin.

More than 4,000 Ohioans died of an unintentional drug overdose in 2016, according to a survey by the Columbus Dispatch last month, a 36% increase from a year earlier.

"The state would not have paid for them had [the companies] told the truth about the risks and benefits of their drugs", the complaint says.

The drugs the companies are accused of selling also include MS Contin, Dilaudid, Butrans, Hyslingla, Targiniq, Percocet, Percodan, Opana, Zydone, Actiq, Fentora, Duragesic, Nucynta, Kadian, Norco, and several generic opioids, according to a press release. "Every day someone is dying from this addiction".

OH is the second state, after MS, to go directly after Big Pharma.

The Ohio Attorney General's office has filed a lawsuit against major five manufacturers of opiate drugs.

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Following a year that saw large spikes in deaths related to heroin, fentanyl and carfentanil overdoses throughout the state, this lawsuit it just the most recent attempt by DeWine to combat the epidemic.

The state's U.S. Senators, Republican Rob Portman and Democrat Sherrod Brown, have come out in unison against the proposed cuts, as the Daily News previously reported.

The State of OH is not happy with Big Pharma and other pharmaceutical companies.

Messages were left with Endo Health Solutions and Allergan.

OH has been one of the states hardest hit by the epidemic, with data from the state's health department showing that opioids causing the most overdoses. Because the lawsuit was filed in state court, other states can not join the suit as plaintiffs.

"DeWine's call for litigation today is acting on a suggestion that Ohio Democrats have offered on multiple occasions, going back years", he said.

OH officials have sued five major pharmaceutical companies for the role they played in the current opioid epidemic.

- Kentucky settled with Purdue in 2015 for $24 million in a similar case accusing the company of leading an "explosion in opioids".

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