Accused of fueling opioid crisis, drug distributors blame others

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Officials maintain that AmerisourceBergen Drug Co., McKesson Corp. and central Ohio's Cardinal Health Inc. bear much of the blame for the drug scourge that has ravaged West Virginia. About 1,100 people have overdosed and died in Cabell County in the past 10 years.

The Ohio River metropolis of Huntington, West Virginia, and surrounding Cabell County started arguing their case this week that the nation’s largest drug distributors fueled the opioid disaster for years by flooding their communities with prescription ache tablets.

It is a landmark case unfolding in a federal courtroom in Charleston, the primary of its form to achieve trial.

The town and county preserve that AmerisourceBergen Drug Co., McKesson Corp. and central Ohio’s Cardinal Well being Inc. bear a lot of the blame for the drug scourge that has ravaged West Virginia. About 1,100 folks have overdosed and died in Cabell County previously 10 years.

The businesses counter that they have been merely filling a rise in prescriptions written by medical doctors to pharmacies, because the medical philosophy of ache therapy modified.

Extra:The Science of Opioids: How a Nation Became Addicted

All three distributors deny any wrongdoing or obligation, saying they labored with federal regulators and served solely as intermediaries in a sequence bracketed by the drug producers on one finish and medical doctors and pharmacies on the opposite.

“It was not suspicious that Cardinal Well being was getting extra orders for opioids,” mentioned Enu Mainigi, an lawyer for Cardinal Well being, which is headquartered in Dublin. “We’re a mirror on what occurred in well being care. We mirror it. We do not drive it.”

Theodore Decker

Enable me to make what I freely admit is in some methods an apples-to-Oxycontin comparability.

In one other federal case out of Huntington that didn’t seize practically as a lot consideration, a central Ohio drug distributor of one other form confronted the music in 2018.

Jamal Glass of Columbus was 20 years previous when he pleaded responsible in West Virginia to promoting heroin and a gun to an individual who turned out to be a authorities informant. Glass was despatched to federal jail for 5⅓ years.

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