The company is committed to resolving all lawsuits related to opioid drugs and disbursing the agreed sum over nine years.
The pharmaceutical company Johnson & Johnson will stop producing and selling opioids in the United States after reaching a payment agreement of up to 230 million dollars with the state of New York to resolve the related lawsuits against it. The news was released this Saturday, through a statement from the State Attorney General’s Office, Letitia James.
The arrangement comes after the company was on the list of drug companies accused of aggressively marketing these components in 2019, increasing the risk of addiction.
“The opioid epidemic has wreaked havoc in countless communities in New York State and across the country, leaving millions of people addicted to dangerous and deadly opioids. Johnson & Johnson helped fuel this fire, but today it is He is committing to abandon the opioid business, not only in New York but throughout the country, “the prosecutor said.
The company is committed to resolving all lawsuits related to opioid drugs and disbursing the agreed sum over nine years. However, Johnson & Johnson could pay $ 30 million more in the first year if the New York state executive chamber signs legislation creating “an opioid settlement fund.”
For its part, the company stressed that it is not “an admission of responsibility or crime”, and emphasized that it will defend its interests in any dispute that is not resolved within the framework of the announced agreement. In addition, he recalled that it was in 2020 when they decided to end the production of all prescription painkillers in the United States.
Claims against the main pharmaceutical companies in the country
James filed a complaint against Johnson & Johnson, as well as against other drug manufacturers in 2019. In addition to the entity that the official runs, authorities in several states, cities, and counties across the country also joined the accusations, details CNBC.
The complaints alleged that drug producers aggressively promoted opioids, leading to many people becoming addicts and abusing other illegal forms of opioids.
Meanwhile, the lawsuit related to the New York state attorney general’s lawsuit against the other companies will begin next week. However, it will not involve the pharmaceutical Purdue Pharma, one of the main defendants, which is in the bankruptcy process, according to Forbes magazine.
What are opioids and what is the balance of their abuse in the US?
Opioids are pain relievers that affect areas of the brain that control emotions to lessen the effects of a painful stimulus. Medications in this class include hydrocodone, oxycodone, morphine, and codeine.
Hydrocodone products are most often prescribed for conditions as varied as dental or injury-related pain, while morphine is often used to relieve acute pain before and after surgical procedures. Also, codeine is commonly prescribed to treat mild pain. In addition to their pain-relieving properties, medications such as codeine and diphenoxylate are often used to relieve coughs and severe diarrhea, as the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) says.
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), nearly 500,000 people died between 1999 and 2019 due to an overdose of an opioid, including prescription or illicit.