Drug Distributor and J. & J.Announced $ 26 billion deal to end opioid proceedings

After two years of controversy, the country’s three major drug distributors and pharmaceutical giants have entered into a $ 26 billion deal with the state to free some of the industry’s largest companies from all liability in the opioid epidemic. Reached.

The announcement was made Wednesday afternoon by a bipartisan group of state prosecutors. Both companies did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

This offer will be sent to all states and cities in the country for approval. If enough of them formally sign on to it, billions of dollars from businesses will begin to be released, helping the community pay high financial costs for addiction treatment and prevention services and other epidemics. can do.

In return, states and cities pledge to withdraw thousands of proceedings against businesses and take no action in the future.

The settlement has bound only these four companies (pharmaceutical distributors Cardinal Health, AmerisourceBergen McKesson, Johnson & Johnson) and has settled thousands of other proceedings against many other pharmaceutical defendants, including manufacturers and drugstore chains. I am leaving it in the proceedings.

However, these four companies are widely seen as one of the defendants with the deepest pockets.

Distributors, whose law requires monitoring prescription drug shipments, have been accused of closing their eyes for 20 years while pharmacies across the country are ordering millions of tablets from their communities. Plaintiffs also Johnson & JohnsonContracted with Tasmanian poppy growers to supply opioid materials to manufacturers, create their own fentanyl patches for painful patients, and downplay addiction to doctors and patients.

Between 1999 and 2019, 500,000 people died from prescription and street opioid overdose, according to federal data.Death from opioid overdose Record high in 2020 The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said earlier this month.

Under the agreement, the three distributors of the country Payment for over 18 years. Johnson & Johnson will pay $ 5 billion over nine years. An important feature of the contract is the establishment of an independent clearinghouse for distributors to track and report each other’s shipments. This is a new and unusual mechanism aimed at making data transparent and sending a warning signal immediately when an oversized order is placed.

Another deal between the company and the Native American tribe is still under negotiation.

The agreement was presented by the Attorney Generals of North Carolina, Pennsylvania, New York, Delaware, Louisiana, Tennessee, and Connecticut.

Wednesday’s announcement suggests that key factors (in principle, the majority of states agree) are being met. However, there are still some daunting obstacles before the check is actually cut.

The state and the District of Columbia have 30 days to scrutinize the agreement, including the amount each will be paid in 17 years. Many states have not yet had the opportunity to scrutinize transactions. Also, many allow the Attorney General’s approval, but others need to consult the legislator. An unspecified number of states need to sign on to proceed with the transaction. If that threshold is not met, the company may leave.

While the state is deciding, the trials brought by several California counties in state court against Johnson & Johnson and the local West Virginia trial in federal court against distributors will continue. ..

States must also begin to dispute the region, including those that have already filed proceedings and those that have not, in order to agree to the agreement. The more local governments you sign on, the more money each state will receive.

“The lawyer will not be paid to the lawyer until the deal is closed, so he will use the strong armament of his client, the local government, to agree to a settlement,” said Elizabeth Birch of the law. A professor at the University of Georgia who closely tracked the proceedings.

Drug Distributor and J. & J.Announced $ 26 billion deal to end opioid proceedings

Source link Drug Distributor and J. & J.Announced $ 26 billion deal to end opioid proceedings

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