4 companies on verge of settling US opioid lawsuits – Fresno, California

Fresno, California 2021-07-20 09:06:20 –

Three major U.S. drug distributors and pharmaceutical company Johnson & Johnson are on the verge of a $ 26 billion settlement covering thousands of lawsuits over opioid tolls across the United States. Two people who knew told the Associated Press.

As a precursor to a major deal, distributors AmerisourceBergen, Cardinal Health and McKesson will announce a deal to settle an ongoing trial in New York on Tuesday, one said. The deal alone would generate more than $ 1 billion to mitigate opioid damage in the state. The trial will continue, but the settlement leaves only three pharmaceutical companies as defendants.

The people who provided the settlement details to the AP were not authorized to speak because the details were finalized, so they provided them on condition of anonymity.

Cardinal Health declined to comment early Tuesday, and other distributors did not respond to requests for comment. However, Johnson and Johnson reiterated in a statement that they were ready to donate up to $ 5 billion to the country’s settlement. The company settled last month just before the trial in New York began. “We are continuing to make progress towards the finalization of this agreement, and we continue to promise to provide certainty to stakeholders and provide important support to families and communities in need,” the company said. .. “The settlement does not admit liability or misconduct, and we continue to defend proceedings in which the final agreement remains unresolved.”

Distribution companies face thousands of similar legal claims from state and local governments across the country and have long sought to resolve them all. According to one source, if an agreement is reached in New York this year, the agreement with New York will be part of a domestic agreement.

State and local governments say distributors did not have adequate control to flag or suspend shipments to pharmacies that received a large share of powerful and addictive prescription analgesics. I will. Both companies claim to be accepting orders for legal drugs by doctors, so the crisis of national addiction and overdose should not be blamed.

In 2012, enough prescription opioids were shipped for everyone in the United States to receive a 20-day supply, according to an analysis of federal distribution data by the Associated Press.

Also, opioids, which contain both prescription drugs and illicit drugs such as heroin and illegally manufactured fentanyl, have led to more than 500,000 deaths in the United States since 2000.

Under the New York settlement, the three companies will offer more than $ 1 billion used to mitigate the state epidemic. The money will be delivered in 18 annual payments and the first payment will arrive this year.
The two companies will also establish a national clearinghouse for data on opioid distribution, and the data will be monitored by an independent body. Johnson & Johnson also agrees not to manufacture opioids for the next 10 years.

There are currently three trials across the United States on government agencies’ allegations that businesses should be held accountable for the opioid crisis, including the New York case. One in California focuses exclusively on pharmaceutical companies, and one that will conclude in West Virginia this month is for distributors only. If the deal is closed, it may be closed.

Other cases are queued to get started. So far, only Oklahoma two years ago reached this kind of verdict. So the judge ordered Johnson & Johnson, the only company that did not settle before the trial, to pay $ 465 million. The company is suing the ruling.

The New York proceedings are the widest proceedings to be tried so far, and are the first proceedings to be decided by a jury as well as a judge.

Johnson & Johnson settled for $ 230 million shortly before the proceedings began. The remaining defendants are Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, Endo International, and AbbVie, Inc.

So many cases are approaching trial, and the number of proposed or achieved settlements over opioids is skyrocketing. Purdue Pharma, the maker of OxyContin, has declared bankruptcy as part of its efforts to resolve the proceedings. As part of the company’s long-term value of around $ 10 billion, it is proposing a restructuring to fight the epidemic with all future profits. The plan will face some opposition at a confirmation hearing at the US Bankruptcy Court next month.

The above video was used in a previous report.

Copyright © 2021 By AP communication. all rights reserved.

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