Canada-Wide Settlement: Seeking Justice for Opioid Victims

Purdue Pharma, the manufacturer of OxyContin and OxyNEO, has agreed to a monumental $20 million class action settlement in a pivotal legal development. This groundbreaking agreement, which has received judicial approval in Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia, and Saskatchewan, represents a significant stride toward accountability in pharmaceutical litigation.

The Opioid Emergency in Canada

Canada is grappling with a profound opioid crisis, and OxyContin has significantly exacerbated this public health emergency. According to data from the Government of Canada, opioid-related overdoses claimed the lives of over 17,000 individuals between January 2016 and September 2021 alone. There is an urgent need for intervention and continued accountability within the pharmaceutical industry.

OxyContin, a potent opioid pain reliever, gained widespread popularity in Canada following its introduction in the 1990s. Marketed as a revolutionary solution for chronic pain management, the drug’s high potency and addictive properties …

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Purdue’s Ad Agency Settles Oxycontin Lawsuit

For the very first time, a company that worked on Purdue Pharma’s OxyContin ads has settled a lawsuit claiming they falsely said opioids were safe, according to CNN.

Publicis, a French marketing firm, agreed to pay $350 million within two months and won’t work with any more opioid companies, according to New York Attorney General Letitia James. She and Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser led the talks, joined by eight other states.

“For ten years, Publicis helped opioid makers like Purdue Pharma convince doctors to give out too many opioids, which made the opioid crisis worse and hurt communities everywhere,” said James. “Money can’t make up for the lives lost and the addiction caused, but with this deal, Publicis will stop their illegal actions.”

Why is a Marketing Firm Being Held Liable for Oxycontin?

A marketing firm can be …

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Opioid Lawsuits Are Bankrupting Rite-Aid

While there have been many stories about rampant crime in major cities, the fact is that these same cities also have a lot of opioid addiction. In recent years, states, counties, and cities have been suing distributors of opioids like Oxycontin. While many companies, such as the drug maker Purdue Pharma, have settled, some distributors and pharmacies have had issues. Rite-Aid is one of these pharmacies that chose not to participate in a bulk settlement. Because of this, they face more than a thousand lawsuits for their sales of Oxycontin and other addictive pain pills.

Rite-Aid in Danger of Closing

Rite-Aid is one of the largest chains of pharmacies in the United States, but they now face billions of dollars in death and risk closure due to outstanding opioid lawsuits. Not settling, as other pharmacies have done, including Walgreens, …

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Chronic Pain May Make Opioid Use Disorder Worse

Researchers following the data for people with fibromyalgia and opioid use disorder found that people with chronic pain may have more challenges when staying sober.

Chronic Pain and Opioid Exposure

Many people first use opioids to treat pain. Physical pain can significantly contribute to the development of opioid use disorder. Opioids are commonly prescribed to manage chronic pain; over time, people may develop a tolerance to the medication. They may require higher doses to achieve the same pain relief. As a result, individuals may become physically dependent on opioids, which can lead to opioid use disorder.

Most people’s first exposure to opioids is through an illness or injury where a doctor prescribes drugs like Percocet or Oxycontin.

Chronic Illness and Opioid Misuse

Chronic pain can increase the risk of addiction, overdose, and other adverse effects.

There is also a chance …

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SCOTUS Sides With Pill Mill Doctors On Controlled Substances Act

A ruling by the Supreme Court of the United States found that doctors who mis-prescribe or overprescribed opioids must have done so purposefully to be criminally charged. Many doctors who have been charged during the opioid crisis have been accused of being “pill mills” and cranking out prescriptions almost maliciously. But if the doctors didn’t know or purposefully violated the Controlled Substances Act, they should not be charged, wrote Justice Breyer in the SCOTUS ruling.

The Opioid Cases That Made The Decision

Two different doctors had their cases kicked up to the Supreme Court, both of them facing over 20 years in prison and claiming their prescriptions for patients were written in good faith. Both doctors faced claims that they were writing prescriptions to help people with legitimate pain. They did not know they were addicting people and didn’t realize …

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Purdue Pleads Guilty in Criminal Court

Purdue Pharma, the drugmakers responsible for Oxycontin, pleaded guilty to criminal charges this afternoon. The charges are related to the drug,  a highly addictive narcotic that has been a primary driver of the opioid epidemic.

Previous Oxycontin Lawsuits

The guilty pleas in the criminal case came after a settlement last month

In October, the Sackler Family (owners of Perdue) were handed an eight billion dollar judgment, a settlement combining thousands of lawsuits from cities, states, and counties. (Not every locality suing Perdue signed off on the settlement, and some were paid out separately, including New York, which received several billion of its own.) Purdue has filed for bankruptcy and may be restructured and overseen by the government as the Sacklers remove themselves from the business.

Perdue’s Criminal Charges

In today’s world, corporations are treated as people. It may be surprising …

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Italy Starts its Own Oxycontin Probe

In Italy, a peculiar rise in opioid prescriptions brought suspicion against Perdue Pharmaceuticals and a doctor named Guido Fanelli. Authorities began to suspect a conspiracy among a group of pharmaceutical executives police nicknamed “The Pain League.” Used to fighting corruption and the inner workings of criminal cases such as mob bosses, authorities sought to find culpability within Mundipharma — the international arm of Purdue Pharma. They began an investigation using wiretaps and subpoenas to follow the money.

Purdue Pharma, the manufacturer of Oxycontin, faces over 2,000 lawsuits in the United States over its role in the opioid crisis. This case is the first known case outside the U.S., where executives and employees of Perdue are criminally charged and implicated. While the opioid epidemic has cost fewer lives in Italy, the criminal intent, prosecutors say, is clear.

Making Money Promoting Opioids

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Drug Distributor McKesson Settles WV Opioid Lawsuit

McKesson, a drug distribution giant, has decided to settle a lawsuit in West Virginia with a 37 million dollar settlement. The company paid $14.5 million upon settling and will pay another $4.5 million a year for the next five years.

About the Lawsuit

The original lawsuit accused the drug distributor of turning a willfully blind eye to suspicious behavior. Many opioid distributors have been charged with ignoring abnormally large orders, such as massive amounts of pills sent to different pharmacies across the state repeatedly.

When irregularities were noted, the company did nothing to investigate.

As part of the settlement, McKesson did not have to admit any wrongdoings.

McKesson’s Ongoing Trouble

This lawsuit is not the company’s first lawsuit for its practices regarding opioids. In 2017, the McKesson paid $150 million in penalties. They were forced to suspend sales of opioids …

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In Delaware, 3000 People Run 5K to Raise Awareness of Addiction

More than 3,000 people rallied, ran and walked in Old New Castle, Delaware last Saturday morning to raise awareness for what organizers say is the public health crisis of this generation. Family members, friends, and people in recovery ran the annual atTAcK Addiction “Erase the Stigma 5K” is an event that attracts people personally affected by addiction.

The annual race was started by parents who lost (or almost lost) their children to opioid overdose. They bonded and created a nonprofit to combat opioid abuse and addiction in Delaware. Their grassroots nonprofit helps to educate people about addiction in the community. They have a special high school just for students in recovery from addiction and they also provide addiction-related services such as support groups.

AtTAcK Addiction provides services directly to people who are looking for safe sober housing. Their 5K has …

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Florida Sues CVS and Walgreens Over Opioids

The state of Florida has announced it is suing Walgreens and CVS, blaming them for the local and national opioid crisis. They say the two retailers, who also happen to be the most significant two pharmacy chains in the US, helped create the crisis by “overselling painkillers” and not taking actions that would help stop the increasing illegal sales once the opioids left the pharmacy. In essence, they are being accused by the government of turning a blind eye to the opioid crisis.

The lawsuit isn’t a new lawsuit, but rather an amended lawsuit filed by Attorney General Pam Bondi. The lawsuit also points fingers to Purdue Pharma, the maker of OxyContin, and several opioid distributors. All of these entities, she says, profited as they willfully turned blind eyes to the addiction epidemic.

In Bondi’s press release, she alleges that …

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