City lawsuit aimed at major drug firms to battle opioid crisis

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NYC sues opioid makers, distributors for role in drug epidemic

De Blasio also met with Trump just over a week after the 2016 election to talk with the then-president-elect about "the concerns and the needs of all New Yorkers", saying that many "were fearful".

Manufacturer named in the suit are Purdue Pharma L.P.; Purdue Pharma, Inc.; The Purdue Frederick Company, Inc.; Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc.; Cephalon, Inc.; Johnson& Johnson; Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc.; OrthoMcNeil-Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc.; Janssen Pharmaceutica, Inc. n/k/a Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc.; Endo Health Solutions Inc.; Endo Pharmaceuticals, Inc.; Allergan PLC f/k/a Actavis PLC; Actavis, Inc. f/k/a Watson Pharmaceuticals, Inc.; Watson Laboratories, Inc.; Actavis Pharma, Inc. f/k/a Watson Pharma, Inc.

The lawsuit, filed in New York State Supreme Court on Tuesday, seeks to recover $500 million in current and future costs the city will incur to fight the opioid epidemic.

"It's time for big pharma to pay for what they have done, it's time to them to be held accountable", the mayor continued.

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More New Yorkers died from opioid-related overdoses previous year than from vehicle accidents and homicides combined.

In 2016, more than 1,000 people in New York City died of opioid-related overdoses, the largest number on record for one year. "It's time that they are held accountable".

By suing major manufacturers and distributors of prescription opioids, New York City has joined hundreds of municipalities across the state and the country that are taking steps to hold these companies accountable for their role in the opioid crisis. The distributors include McKesson, Cardinal Health and AmerisourceBergen.

The mayor and first lady last March launched HealingNYC, a $38 million initiative to address the opioid epidemic. The litigation, announced Tuesday, comes as other cities and states have filed similar lawsuits. Opioid abusers who initially became dependent on prescription drugs have increasingly turned to heroin, which is less expensive and more readily available.

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"They have families and friends... they have goals and dreams", she said.

"Through deceptive marketing practices, they attempted to persuade-that is, the pharmaceutical industry-both doctors and the general patient community that risk could be managed", said Carter.

"Although our products account for approximately 2% of the total opioid prescriptions, as a company, we've distributed the CDC Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain, developed three of the first four FDA-approved opioid medications with abuse-deterrent properties and partner with law enforcement to ensure access to naloxone", said Purdue, referring to an overdose antidote.

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

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Dr. Herminia Palacio, the city's Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services, said overdose deaths in the city jumped 17 percent from 2014 to 2015 and then 50 percent from 2015 to 2016, with involved in almost half of those deaths.

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