OxyContin maker reaches $270 million settlement

Credit: Reuters Studio
Published on March 26, 2019 - Duration: 01:10s

OxyContin maker reaches $270 million settlement

Purdue Pharma, the maker of OxyContin, reached a $270 million settlement to resolve a lawsuit by the state of Oklahoma accusing the company of helping fuel an opioid abuse epidemic.

Zachary Goelman reports.

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OxyContin maker reaches $270 million settlement

The company behind the prescription opioid OxyContin reached a $270 million settlement with the state of Oklahoma.

The agreement resolves a lawsuit that accused the company, Purdue Pharmaceutical, of helping fuel an opioid abuse epidemic And the suit didn't just target Purdue: the state attorney general accused Johnson & Johnson and Teva Pharmaceutical of deceptive marketing.

The state claimed the pharma companies downplayed the risks of addiction, and overstated their drugs' benefits.

The companies deny the charges.

J&J and Teva are not party to the settlement and those claims still stand.

The state had been seeking more than $20 billion in damages, according to court papers.

The Oklahoma settlement is the first to result from a wave of recent lawsuits accusing Purdue of deceptively marketing painkillers.

The Stamford, Connecticut-based company has been exploring filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection because of potential liabilities stemming from the lawsuits.

The U.S. Centers For Disease Control say opioids including prescription painkillers and illegal drugs such as heroin and fentanyl, were involved in a record 47,600 overdose deaths in 2017 in the United States.

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