Purdue Pharma is considered one of the main culprits of the opioid crisis. Its marketing efforts may have led to a spike in use of opioids for ailments they had not been traditionally prescribed for. Lawmakers were keen to making Purdue pay for it. Yesterday the company announced a tentative settlement for $3 billion up front:

Purdue Pharma, the maker of the opioid drug OxyContin, has reached a tentative deal worth billions of dollars that would resolve thousands of lawsuits brought by municipal and state governments who sued the company for allegedly helping to fuel the opioid crisis.

The pending settlement likely means Purdue will avoid going to trial in the sprawling and complicated case involving some 2,300 local governments across 23 states.

Lawyer Paul Farrell, one of the lead attorneys representing more than 2,000 local governments that have filed suit against Purdue, said the Sackler family, which owns the privately-held drug company, will pay roughly $3 billion dollars in cash over several years and relinquish control of the company.

How the $3 billion payment will be divvied up among cities, towns and communities across the country remains to be seen. For now, the Sacklers have settled claims against it from thousands of communities. Pursuant to the proposal, future OxyContin sales will go into a trust to help communities suffering from the opioid epidemic.

A bevy of state attorneys general like Letitia James of New York and William Tong of Connecticut are not happy with the settlement. Read more:


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