The amount equates to 4% of the companies' combined annual revenue.Jul 21, 2021 - Health
That's happening as opioid overdoses and suicide rates rise.Nov 21, 2019 - Health
Rising obesity rates will strain the most expensive health care system in the world.Oct 31, 2019 - Health
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recorded over 96,000 deaths from drug overdoses in a twelve-month period ending in March 2021, according to provisional data released Wednesday.
Why it matters: It's a nearly 30% jump over the preceding 12 months and coincides with one of the deadliest periods of the COVID-19 pandemic, when stay-at-home orders radically changed daily life for most Americans.
A Texas doctor accused of inappropriately touching 17 female patients had then been told by a medical board to only treat men before being reported for assault by a male patient, an investigation by the Texas Observer found.
Why it matters: Medical boards that oversee doctors across the U.S. have used this loophole of curbing the types of patients predatory doctors are allowed to see rather than revoking their licenses, experts in the report said.
The Department of Justice on Wednesday filed an appeal to block the Purdue Pharma bankruptcy plan, which shields the Sackler family from getting sued over opioids in the future, NPR reports.
Driving the news: Earlier this month, a federal judge approved a bankruptcy settlement that granted immunity to the Sacklers as long as they paid $4.3 billion and renounced ownership of Purdue Pharma. The DOJ said the deal was "unlawful" and "unconstitutional."
Nearly a quarter of U.S. adults with chronic pain had used a prescription opioid in the past three months when surveyed in 2019, according to data published Thursday by the National Center for Health Statistics.
Why it matters: Prescription opioid use for chronic pain management has been associated with an increased risk of misuse, addiction and death — have been the subject of massive class-action lawsuits against opioid manufacturers and distributors.
Since 2016, the four companies involved in the latest opioid settlement — Johnson & Johnson, McKesson, AmerisourceBergen and Cardinal Health — have funneled a combined $100 billion to shareholders through stock buybacks and dividends.
Why it matters: If that's any indication, those companies won't have much trouble paying off a combined $26 billion settlement agreement.
Fifteen states have reached an agreement with Purdue Pharma, the maker of the powerful painkiller OxyContin, that will see them drop their opposition to Purdue's bankruptcy plan, the New York Times reports.
The big picture: Purdue Pharma will release millions of documents, and the Sackler family, which owns the company, will pay out an additional $50 million as part of the settlement. The deal would shield the family from future opioid lawsuits.
New York City and 21 New York counties on Tuesday sued McKinsey & Company, alleging the global consulting firm contributed to the opioid crisis by helping drug companies increase prescription drug sales, AP reports.
Why it matters: The company earlier this year reached deals with all 50 states to pay more than $600 million in settlements for its role in advising OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma.
The Food and Drug Administration on Friday approved a higher dose of naloxone hydrochloride nasal spray to reverse the effects of opioid overdoses.
The big picture: "Experts and patient advocates say the more potent medicine is needed because low-dose naloxone sprays and injections sometimes must be given multiple times to keep someone alive until medical help arrives," AP writes.
The acting director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, Regina LaBelle, on Thursday said that drug deaths increased by 26.8% during the coronavirus pandemic.
What she's saying: "We lost 88,000 people in the 12-month period ending in August 2020," LaBelle said, according to NPR.