Connecticut Attorney General to participate in pharmaceutical investigation

Gladys Abbott
June 15, 2017

Attorney General George Jepsen said he and his peers are examining what role, if any, opioid manufacturers may have played in exacerbating or prolonging the nation's opioid epidemic.

State attorneys general from across the US, including IN, have started a joint investigation into whether drug manufacturers are illegally marketing and selling opioids, a critical question as the country faces an epidemic leading to tens of thousands of overdose deaths each year.

Separate lawsuits by attorneys general in OH and MS, the two states that have pursued opioid-related cases to date, have targeted Purdue Pharma LP, Johnson & Johnson, Endo International Plc, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd and Allergan Plc.

The attorneys general are not identifying any targets of their investigation at this time.

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According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, opioids were involved in more than 33,000 deaths in 2015 including more than 1,400 in Tennessee. He has supported federal efforts to improve the availability of treatment and recovery resources, partnered with U.S. Attorney Dana Boente to create the Hampton Roads Heroin Working Group to develop holistic, community-driven solutions to the heroin and opioid crisis, and made prescription drug disposal kits available across the Commonwealth.

In Connecticut, 917 people died from accidental drug overdoses in 2016- more than half of them related to the powerful opioid fentanyl.

Teva in a statement said on Thursday it is "committed to the appropriate promotion and use of opioids".

The Food and Drug Administration has increased its scrutiny of opioids, directing drugmaker Endo International Plc last week to pull its Opana ER opioid from shelves. As attorney general, it is my responsibility to take whatever action is within my authority to help address this crisis, which is why I have joined with my colleagues in announcing our bipartisan, multistate efforts today.

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