Delaware to benefit from two opioid settlements

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Two opioid settlements were announced on Thursday by the office of Delaware Attorney General Kathy Jennings.

The $350 million national settlement with Publicis Health resolves investigations into the global marketing and communications firm’s role in the prescription opioid crisis. Delaware will receive over $1.5 million from the settlement to address the opioid crisis.
The company will disclose on a public website thousands of internal documents detailing its work for opioid companies like Purdue Pharma and will stop accepting client work related to opioid-based Schedule II or other Schedule II narcotics.

According to the AG’s office, court documents detail how Publicis acted as Purdue’s agency of record for all its branded opioid drugs, including OxyContin, even developing sales tactics that relied on farming data from recordings of personal conversations between patients and providers. Publicis was also instrumental in Purdue’s decision to market OxyContin to providers on patient’s electronic health records.

Thousands of Delawareans have died of overdose fatalities since 2000 and added costs to the state healthcare, child welfare and criminal justice systems.

Settlements and other resolutions of the State’s opioid claims are expected to result in nearly a quarter billion dollars being paid to address the opioid crisis in Delaware, according to the AG’s office.

  Delaware’s share of the Publicis settlement will go to the State’s Prescription Opioid Settlement Distribution Fund and be distributed on the recommendations of an independent commission created by legislation. Spending from the Fund is largely restricted to services that reduce or remediate harm caused by opioids.

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It also announced a $150 million multistate settlement in principle with opioid manufacturer Hikma Pharmaceuticals for its role in the opioid crisis.

The dollar amount going to Delaware was not announced.

Hikma produces a range of branded and generic opioid products and sells hundreds of millions of opioid doses every year.

The settlement in principal was negotiated by the attorneys general of New York, California, Delaware, Tennessee, Utah, and Virginia in coordination with an executive committee consisting of the attorneys general of Colorado, Idaho, Illinois, Massachusetts, North Carolina, Ohio, and Oregon.

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