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posted by martyb on Tuesday March 26 2019, @10:48PM   Printer-friendly
from the it's-a-start dept.

Purdue Pharma settles opioid lawsuit for $270m

Purdue Pharma, the drug-maker owned by the billionaire Sackler family, has reached a $270m settlement in a lawsuit which claimed its opioids contributed to the deaths of thousands of people.

The deal with Oklahoma is the first settlement the US firm has struck amid some 2,000 other lawsuits it is facing linked to its painkiller OxyContin.

Purdue is one of several firms named in the claim which alleged they used deceptive practices to sell opioids.

[...]Under the settlement, Purdue will pay $102.5m towards the creation of a National Centre for Addiction Studies and Treatment at Oklahoma State University.

The Sacklers themselves said that they will contribute $75m over five years to the centre.

Also at CNN and NBC.

Previously: OxyContin Maker Purdue Pharma May File for Bankruptcy to Disrupt Lawsuits


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  • (Score: 2) by tizan on Tuesday March 26 2019, @11:17PM (12 children)

    by tizan (3245) on Tuesday March 26 2019, @11:17PM (#820396)

    They paid family members $4bn ...Guess how much profit they made...this is not even causing a dent

    48000 overdose in 2017

    https://www.theguardian.com/society/2019/feb/01/oxycontin-sackler-family-profits-opioid-crisis-court-files-reveal [theguardian.com]

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 26 2019, @11:37PM (9 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 26 2019, @11:37PM (#820400)

      It's hilarious to me that fake stats like this is the way to take down these scammers . Rather than revealing their entire method of figuring out what is a good idea to give to people or not is essentially a bunch of strung together fallacies (NHST), it is better to come up with more fallacious statistics.

      • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Tuesday March 26 2019, @11:53PM (8 children)

        by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday March 26 2019, @11:53PM (#820407) Journal

        ...revealing their entire method of figuring out what is a good idea to give to people...

        This doesn't quite parse. Care to rephrase it for a human mind?

        --
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0 https://soylentnews.org/~MichaelDavidCrawford
        • (Score: 1, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 26 2019, @11:56PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 26 2019, @11:56PM (#820408)

          Clearly the writings of a Purdue Pharma patient.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 27 2019, @12:32AM (6 children)

          by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 27 2019, @12:32AM (#820421)

          their entire method of figuring out what is a good idea to give to people or not

          Whether the benefits outweigh the cost when giving sick people a drug.

          • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Wednesday March 27 2019, @12:44AM (3 children)

            by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday March 27 2019, @12:44AM (#820427) Journal

            their method of figuring "Whether the benefits outweigh the cost when giving sick people a drug." [theguardian.com]

            Scientists in the federal government and inside Purdue warned Richard Sackler, then the senior vice-president of Purdue responsible for sales, of the risks that OxyContin would be abused if it was uncontrolled.

            After a co-worker wrote to him with such a warning Sackler responded, according to Tuesday’s filing: “How substantially would it improve your sales?”

            --
            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0 https://soylentnews.org/~MichaelDavidCrawford
            • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 27 2019, @01:03AM (2 children)

              by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 27 2019, @01:03AM (#820433)

              What is your point? The government approved it cause "p < 0.05" and they hadn't reached their quote for drugs to approve yet that year.

              • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Wednesday March 27 2019, @01:44AM (1 child)

                by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday March 27 2019, @01:44AM (#820440) Journal

                What is your question? Are you able to formulate it coherently?

                Rather than revealing their entire method of figuring out what is a good idea to give to people or not

                Who are they?

                The government approved it cause "p they hadn't reached their quote for drugs to approve yet that year.

                How is the emphasis relevant?

                --
                https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0 https://soylentnews.org/~MichaelDavidCrawford
                • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 27 2019, @01:51AM

                  by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 27 2019, @01:51AM (#820442)

                  Sorry, I don't have a question for you. It is clear what will convince you, and it don't involve no compound sentences.

          • (Score: 2) by Runaway1956 on Wednesday March 27 2019, @02:10AM (1 child)

            by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday March 27 2019, @02:10AM (#820446) Journal

            I don't think anyone questions that oxycontin is a good and useful drug, sometimes. Pushing drugs for profit is the issue here. Rewarding successful pushers is the issue.

            --
            We've finally beat Medicare! - Houseplant in Chief
            • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 27 2019, @02:21AM

              by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 27 2019, @02:21AM (#820455)

              Here is what they did:

              1. Test "addictiveness" in in-patients who are sitting in a miserable room under doctor/nurse supervision
              - Result: p < 0.05 for pain killing but p > 0.05 for habit-forming

              2. Extrapolate the results of #1 to out-patients who are sitting at home watching TV and drinking beer when they pop a pill

    • (Score: 2) by krishnoid on Wednesday March 27 2019, @12:02AM (1 child)

      by krishnoid (1156) on Wednesday March 27 2019, @12:02AM (#820412)

      If you want to start making a dent, you could consider acupuncture as a first-line treatment, as the military does [google: opioid acupuncture pubmed]. Most of the studies come from alternative medicine journals, but it's the kind of thing that could stop the pain before even needing an opioid prescription -- especially as acupuncture doesn't seem to help with opioid addiction [nih.gov] itself.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 27 2019, @12:44AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 27 2019, @12:44AM (#820426)

        No, I now really think making a dent needs to be detached from reality the same way these people made a dent. Whether people should be using a treatment or not is totally irrelevant.

  • (Score: -1, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 26 2019, @11:58PM (5 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 26 2019, @11:58PM (#820410)

    If killing a few junkies is worth $270 million, what is an appropriate penalty for causing autism in millions of otherwise healthy and productive children?

    • (Score: 2) by krishnoid on Wednesday March 27 2019, @12:09AM (1 child)

      by krishnoid (1156) on Wednesday March 27 2019, @12:09AM (#820413)

      Being forced to sit through the entire run of The Big Bang Theory, but only the Sheldon scenes?

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 27 2019, @05:21AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 27 2019, @05:21AM (#820492)

        Being forced to sit through the entire run of The Big Bang Theory, but only the Sheldon scenes?

        Creative, but that sentence would be struck down in the US courts since the eighth amendment prohibits cruel and unusual punishment.

    • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 27 2019, @12:18AM (1 child)

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 27 2019, @12:18AM (#820415)

      A gold medal.

      • (Score: 2) by DannyB on Wednesday March 27 2019, @01:54PM

        by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday March 27 2019, @01:54PM (#820630) Journal

        As long as I get to pin the medal on. As long as the medal has very long and sharp and many pins to hold it securely in place.

        --
        Trump is a poor man's idea of a rich man, a weak man's idea of a strong man, and a stupid man's idea of a smart man.
    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by cmdrklarg on Wednesday March 27 2019, @05:46PM

      by cmdrklarg (5048) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday March 27 2019, @05:46PM (#820811)

      Nothing, as vaccines don't cause autism.

      Now, I'd like to know how much these pro-diseasers will have to pay for kids who are disabled or killed when they are infected by diseases preventable by vaccines.

      --
      The world is full of kings and queens who blind your eyes and steal your dreams.
  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Barenflimski on Wednesday March 27 2019, @02:11AM (2 children)

    by Barenflimski (6836) on Wednesday March 27 2019, @02:11AM (#820448)

    I'm not convinced that just because there is a drug available that availability is the primary reason people do drugs. I'm no phan of pharma, but I don't think it is right to blame them for all of the issues related to drug use. From what I have seen with people over my life, most people bumped into these drugs and simply had no way off once they were knee deep in. Almost no one can take a week off to detox from opiates. Its much easier and in many cases the only way to keep your job, to just keep taking a low maintenance dose until it becomes an even larger issue. By that point, society shames them into a corner by themselves because they let a problem get so bad. I have never seen a case where shaming a person changes their behavior. In most cases this simply confirms what the person already was feeling, and the whole point is to help them move on. This isn't helpful.

    Until we learn as a society how to help each other through tough times in life, we will never change anything. If we don't bottle up the knowledge we have and pass it on to our kids, they will have to re-learn all of it from scratch. Some of the lessons we learn in life are generational lessons, and this is one of them. Unfortunately our system is setup to not be helpful at every turn when someone wants to change their behavior. From being told they have to accept their shortcomings, they are defective at self help groups, to the upfront and mostly un-affordable cost of help, to not being able to take the time off of work, to most of their friends not having any idea how to talk to them about this, to losing all sorts of certifications, gaining a permanent medical record with a pre-exisiting condition, and never being able to qualify for certain jobs ever again, for most it pays to keep this to themselves. The current system has many shortcomings.

    I'm glad a good portion of this will actually go to treatment. It speaks volumes about the conversation when the only way we deal with any of this, on any level is with lawsuits, criminal cases, and locking people up. Maybe it's time to get ahead of this and start a real conversation.

    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by tizan on Wednesday March 27 2019, @02:48AM

      by tizan (3245) on Wednesday March 27 2019, @02:48AM (#820469)

      Most cases where it was being prescribed could be treated with ibuprofen or other such drugs..This is an addictive drug that should be used in cases when others don't work...and the risk of addiction is downweighed by the gain in quality of life (another e.g morphine).
      Doctors were being told by pharma people that it is not addictive...A dentist prescribed it for me after a crown work and told me people in pain don't get addicted !...they thought it was an effective pain killer with no side effects...and that thought was being driven by the sales people talking to them. Nobody was giving morphine willy nilly 2 years ago...but they were for oxycontyn.

    • (Score: 2) by urza9814 on Thursday March 28 2019, @12:21PM

      by urza9814 (3954) on Thursday March 28 2019, @12:21PM (#821269) Journal

      I'm not convinced that just because there is a drug available that availability is the primary reason people do drugs.

      Anyone who does believe that is an idiot, and that's not what this case was about.

      Until we learn as a society how to help each other through tough times in life, we will never change anything.

      THAT is what this case was about. Purdue lied about the potential risks and dangers of this drug, because they knew that telling the truth would hurt their profits. They withheld information that could have saved lives because they felt it was profitable to do so.

      I'm glad a good portion of this will actually go to treatment. It speaks volumes about the conversation when the only way we deal with any of this, on any level is with lawsuits, criminal cases, and locking people up. Maybe it's time to get ahead of this and start a real conversation.

      The way I see it, there's two options. One way or another, we've gotta ensure that people aren't being rewarded for this kind of bad behavior. Lawsuits and prison sentences *are* one way of doing that, although they don't seem to do it very well. Take away a significant portion of their profits (which does not seem to be what happened here...) so that it's more profitable to tell the truth and actually sell medicine instead of pushing pills. Or lock up the people responsible so they can't use those profits. The alternative is to try to rebuild the entire system so that there's no profit motive involved to begin with. The latter would be my preference...but if we must keep it capitalist then we need some way to punish bad behavior.

  • (Score: 2) by DannyB on Wednesday March 27 2019, @02:01PM

    by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday March 27 2019, @02:01PM (#820637) Journal

    Purdue is one of several firms named in the claim which alleged they used deceptive practices to sell opioids.

    Why is that a problem?

    Aren't ALL opioids sold by deceptive practices?

    What Purdue did was have the ingenuity to get doctors to prescribe them. I'm sure many doctors had sample packs to offer patients in keeping with the tradition that the first hit is free.

    --
    Trump is a poor man's idea of a rich man, a weak man's idea of a strong man, and a stupid man's idea of a smart man.
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