NYC Is Suing Pharmaceutical Companies for Igniting the Opioid Epidemic

25 January, 2018, 02:08 | Author: Chad Mckenzie
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"More New Yorkers have died from opioid overdoses than auto crashes and homicides combined in recent years", de Blasio said, noting that more than 1,000 people in New York City died of a drug overdose involving an opioid in 2016, a record. "It needs a national solution".

The city is not the first to take drug companies to court over the opioid crisis; it is represented by the law firm Simmons Hanly Conroy, which a year ago filed similar lawsuits on behalf of several counties in New York State, including Suffolk County on Long Island.

The defendants include Allergan, Johnson & Johnson, Purdue Pharma and Teva, and distributors such as AmerisourceBergen, Cardinal Health and McKesson.

"Big Pharma helped to fuel this epidemic by deceptively peddling these risky drugs and hooking millions of Americans in exchange for profit", de Blasio said.

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In 2016, more than 1,000 New York City residents died as a result of opioid overdoses, according to a statement from the mayor's office.

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The complaint, City of NY v Purdue Pharma LP et al, said the opioid crisis has had a serious impact on NYC, with the number of overdose deaths increasing in each of the last six years. But at around 12:30 p.m., Mayor de Blasio tweeted that he would not be attending the meeting.

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Tuesday's filing follows a suit the city leveled against oil companies, similarly accusing them of contributing to climate change, which the mayor announced on January 10.

NY is suing big pharma over its role in the opioid crisis.

First Lady Chirlane McCray, who leads the city's mental health and substance abuse efforts, said that through the lawsuit, the city "demands transparency and accountability from the nation's largest opioid manufacturers and distributors who have profited from people's pain".

The city has been slow to respond to the crisis, and past year Mr.de Blasio announced a plan to reduce opioid deaths through a combination of outreach, treatment and law enforcement.

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'In contrast, the federal government was spending $24 billion at the height of the HIV/AIDS crisis.

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