Boston to sue opioid manufacturers

Mayor Walsh said today he's picked a South Carolina-based lawfirm to file suit against the makers of opioids to try to recover some of the costs he says the city has incurred treating and dealing with users of their products.

Boston's lawsuit, to be drawn up by Motley Rice of Mount Pleasant, SC, would join a growing list of suits filed by cities and towns in Massachusetts and across the country.

In a statement, Walsh said:

Boston, like so many cities across the country, has invested significant time, money and resources to aggressively attack the opioid crisis from every angle. Now is the time to finally hold the pharmaceutical industry responsible. Through this effort, my priority continues to be the financial and social damages to cities caused by the reckless dissemination of opioids and ensuring that Boston, a city on the front lines of this fight every day, is best positioned to recover and meet these ongoing costs.

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So now drug addicts aren't

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So now drug addicts aren't being held responsible for their habits... what a joke.

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Big Pharma are the ones

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Big Pharma are the ones getting people hooked in the first place. The cartels step in when users can no longer afford the pharmaceuticals.

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The reason

Pharmaceutical companies did two things:
1. they MASSIVELY under reported the addictive potential of oxycontin and actually advertised and sold it as "unlikely to result in addiction"

2. They promoted the drug as a "better" alternative to far less potent drugs with low addiction potential (like those with strong doses of tylenol in them that will whack your liver if you take too many).

This was deliberate, and it has a very strong role in people getting hooked. If you get vicodin for your tooth extraction or minor surgery, it is less potent, you have to be more careful with it, and you are far less likely to become addicted than if you are handed some oxycontin.

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I present to you 1986 ladies

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I present to you 1986 ladies and gentleman...

This is a super productive attitude. Learn nothing about what causes a problem, never progress, do nothing to lessen the problem, solely react with emotion and no science after the problem is full-blown.

Emphasis on not learning...

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"How to Republican 101".

"How to Republican 101".

Don't forget to add "blame poor values" and "blame their lack of personal responsibility"...but only if they are poor and especially if they are black or brown.

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This is like suing breweries

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This is like suing breweries over drunk driving instead of going after liquor stores and bartenders.

In either case it is still ignoring the behavior of the individual.

If it weren't for the precedent set by the suits against the Tobacco Industry this lawsuit would get laughed out of court. Companies are not responsible for the deliberate misuse of their lawful products.

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The tobacco companies were

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The tobacco companies were found to have suppressed evidence their product was harmful, addictive, ultimately deadly, and marketed it aggressively in a manner to cover this up.

There's no detail in this article as to the justification of the lawsuit, but I'm going to guess it's along the same lines. Here's an article that (on page 2) says:

"Others believe opioid manufacturers might have aggressively marketed these drugs to doctors without properly describing the risks. Earlier this month, five doctors were charged with writing fentanyl prescriptions in exchange for kickbacks from Insys. One admitted to taking kickbacks and was sentenced to four years in prison."

That's the crux of it. If someone sells something without disclosing the risks, or worse, willfully hides the risks, and the customers harm themselves or third parties, the seller is responsible.

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It's not like that at all.

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It's not like that at all. Neither liquor stores, breweries or bars prescribe beers. All assert that alcohol can be used safely.

This article never referred to individuals. It referred to a gigantic population of people.

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If the breweries are telling

If the breweries are telling customers getting drunk will NOT cause them to want to get more and more drunk, everyday, and become violent, and incapacitated, to the point they're on the street, if this is very likely the outcome of their product...then YES! It is just like that.

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Gee!!!

When will Mahty turn his unloaded guns on the makers of all that Adderall that’s turning millennials into hopped up morons, Lexington ‘s own Shire Pharmaceuticals?

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Statistics needed

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Please demonstrate that this is a public health problem AND that it was a public health problem fueled by pharmaceutical marketing.

No anecdotes about being italian in a black slum, either. Use statistics. Facts. Public health surveillance information. Police data.

Oh, and leave the kids alone - they aren't nearly as violently out of control as your lot was.

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Riiiiight....

Ever seen a kid after being on Adderall after, oh, about twenty years?

Ever wonder why all those kids that had that crap thrown down their throat by parents who listened to the doctors who told them that the nice lady from Shire that called on them (Tuesdays from 2-4 ONLY) to tell them the wonder of Adderall left out the research on the long term effects are so socially dissociated nowadays?

Maybe you can show me the stats of graduated amphetamine use from an Adderall beginning, say towards meth? Or heroin? I can show you some living statistics if you'd like.

So just be concerned about the well marketed drug that causes all that death and I'll concentrate on the one that creates the living dead. Bet if I could, I'd find a Shire IP address on this post or one from McKinsey or even Jason Lewis' office. What do you think?

Oh, and Codman Square is far from a slum, so there's that.

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He couldn't go with a Boston

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He couldn't go with a Boston based law firm? There are a few in town.

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Too bad the city and state

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Too bad the city and state governments couldn't figure this out a long time ago rather than wasting billions on self injection sites, clean up of syringes, payment for ambulances and emergency room visits for overdose victims, crime fighting because of the increase of bank robberies, stolen dogs, bank robberies, car accidents, people nodding over onto train tracks, only to see no significant change and staggering relapse rate. Since there is no cure for addiction and you can lead a horse to water but you can't make it drink, we should go after the Big Pharma Drug Dealers instead. But you better have the most money and best lawyers on the Planet.

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I know the opioid crisis is

I know the opioid crisis is bad. But I also know there are people who need opioids, and their pain shouldn't be demonized. Before he died, my father was on a fentanyl patch, oral morphine, and Vicodin for any spikes, and it still barely controlled the pain from his metastatic bone cancer. If he hadn't had access to those narcotics, I'm certain he would have been driven to suicide by the pain.

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No one's demonizing their pain

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Every single person I know has or will have a close relative who has to control severe pain. We get it. That doesn't change some basic facts:

1)Pharmaceutical companies have an obligation to fully disclose the harmful potential of their products, including addiction.

2)Pharmaceutical companies and the healthcare industry together have an obligation to seek effective alternatives and to promote an understanding of tradeoffs: effectiveness (which is different for every individual and, I'm sure, every condition), negative effects, and how those pros and cons measure up in a given situation. For example, when my dad was dying of cancer, no one was concerned that he was going to get hooked on morphine.

3)Any actions or policies that prioritize profits over ethical conduct must be harshly penalized, such that no one will want to do it. Really, there is plenty of profit to be made honestly.

4)All substances that combine lethal effects with strong addictive characteristics must be rigorously controlled. No one is going to deny morphine to a dying person, but for a sprained ankle? No. Absolutely not.

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I have mixed feelings about this

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Money needs to be found to address the opiate addiction problem. We live in a capitalist society where it's every person for him- or herself, but many people who suffer misfortune can't afford the cost of recovering from it, so the solution that's been found is to identify people with deep pockets who can be linked to the misfortune and sue them. That has the effect of driving up costs for everyone who does business with the party being sued, all the more so because lawyers attach themselves to the case like bloodsucking leeches.

So, the drug companies will pay. Now, I loathe these people; they profit by making as many people as possible dependent on their products. When they're sued, though, the costs of everyone's prescriptions go up.

I'd rather see the community assume the costs when one of its members suffers a catastrophic misfortune, which opiate addiction certainly is. But then, I'm a socialist.

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