Tuesday, 22 May, 2018

North Dakota joins other states in suing Purdue Pharma for opioid promotion

Texas, 5 other states sue Purdue Pharma, alleging deception that led to opioid overdose deaths Tennessee Attorney General sues Purdue Pharma – Investigations of other opioid manufacturers and distributors
Patty Aguilar | 16 May, 2018, 06:42

"My office is holding Purdue Pharma accountable for fueling the nation's opioid epidemic by deceptive marketing of its prescription opioid painkillers, including OxyContin.", Paxton said.

During a May 15 press conference, Attorney General Ken Paxton announced that his office has filed a consumer protection lawsuit against Purdue Pharma over the marketing and selling of opioids, including OxyContin.

North Dakota and five other states are filing a lawsuit against a drug maker for overdose deaths. As the national death toll from opioid addiction rises, Texas is now suing a national drug manufacturer for aiding in the epidemic.

The lawsuit says Purdue pushed a message of "pseudo-addiction", marketing the idea that people engaged in drug-seeking behavior because they were not receiving enough opioids, and attempted to discredit non-opioid pain relievers by saying medications like aspirin or acetaminophen are riskier for chronic pain. The lawsuit also accuses Purdue Pharma of targeting seniors and other "vulnerable" populations. "Three Tennesseans are dying each day from opioid-related overdoses, and we are committed to the hard work that needs to be done to address this tragedy".

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Stamford, Connecticut-based Purdue in a statement said it denied the allegations.

Stenehjem estimates Purdue has raked in almost 35 billion dollars from opioids over the years that have taken thousands of lives, numbers he calls unconscionable.

The state alleges that Purdue made unsubstantiated claims regarding the benefits of long-term opioids treatment and falsely represented that opioid use improved patients' function and quality of life.

The state's original lawsuit, which was filed in Knox County Circuit Court a year ago, alleges Purdue violated the Tennessee Consumer Protection Act, as well as a 2007 settlement made with the state of Tennessee and, "created a statewide public nuisance by interfering with the health of Tennesseans and the commercial marketplace".

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