Published: Wed, May 16, 2018
Medicine | By Brett Sutton

North Carolina AG Joins Other States In Suing Opioid Manufacturer

North Carolina AG Joins Other States In Suing Opioid Manufacturer

Josephson added that Purdue announced in February it ended promotion of opioids to doctors and restructured and significantly reduced its commercial operation.

"My office is holding Purdue Pharma accountable for fueling the nation's opioid epidemic by deceptively marketing prescription painkillers including OxyContin when it knew their drugs were potentially unsafe and that its use had a high likelihood of leading to addiction", Attorney General Paxton said.

"My office is holding Purdue Pharma accountable for fueling the nation's opioid epidemic by deceptively marketing prescription painkillers including OxyContin when it knew their drugs were potentially unsafe and that its use had a high likelihood of leading to addiction", Paxton said.

The lawsuit, filed by the attorney general's Bureau of Consumer Protection, said the company, well known for its production of brand-name oxycodone prescription OxyContin, understated the risks associated with opioid use while it allegedly exaggerated the benefits, a news release from Laxalt's office said.

Purdue Pharma introduced OxyContin in 1996, claiming that opioids were a safe and effective medical solution to long term chronic pain, Stenehjem said.


The state alleges that Purdue disguised its role in the deceptive marketing of opioids by working through third party front groups (such as pain advocacy groups it created and funded) and Key Opinion Leaders (selected doctors it paid to tout the safety of those pain medications).

Slatery requested that the lawsuit be temporarily sealed because documents Purdue turned over during his office's investigation contain "highly confidential, proprietary, or trade secret information".

The order was filed under a 10-day temporary steal unless Purdue makes a motion to extend it. Yet, Purdue promoted OxyContin and other narcotics to some of its top prescribers in Tennessee despite these many red flags and targeted our most vulnerable citizens.

Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem announced at a press conference Tuesday, May 15, that he had filed a lawsuit on behalf of the state in U.S. District Court against Purdue Pharma, the nation's leading manufacturer of prescription opioids such as OxyContin.

"We lack the resources that we need to treat this problem", said Stenehjem. He says proceeds from the lawsuit should be devoted to opioid treatment programs. Dickenson County and Alexandria, Virginia, filed state lawsuits in March.

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