Kentucky Advances Civil Suit Against Maker of OxyContin

oxycontinThe state of Kentucky is waging war against Purdue Pharma. Kentucky filed a civil lawsuit against the pharmaceutical company because of the addiction crisis caused by the prescription painkiller OxyContin. The state of Kentucky alleges that the drug has caused mass addiction, crime sprees and death. Many of those who did not die from OxyContin are either incarcerated or in state-run treatment facilities. The suit claims that sales representatives mislead thousands of doctors about the potential for abuse.

The company claimed that it was very difficult to get high off of OxyContin, even though addicts quickly figured out that once a pill was crushed and snorted or injected they received the same high as heroin. Reports from other lawsuits claim that the sales people even hid evidence that they knew it was more addictive than other painkillers.

In the beginning, it looked like Purdue would put an end to this lawsuit like it has so many others. The company’s lawyers have successfully stopped several civil law suits pertaining to their most popular drug, and expected to do the same with the lawsuit filed by the state of Kentucky. This one is different, though.

Perhaps the most damaging aspect of the case is where the trial is being held. The trial is being held in Pike County where almost 40 percent of its residents know someone who is in legal trouble due to OxyContin abuse. Additionally, 33 percent of the county has known someone who has overdosed from OxyContin and 29 percent know someone who has died from ingesting the drug. The suit was originally filed six years ago and Purdue has tried for that entire six years, unsuccessfully, to move the trial to a different county.

The trial is likely to have devastating effects on the company despite all their efforts to get the location moved. Ninety (90) percent of the residents in Pike County feel that OxyContin has had a devastating effect on their community. If Purdue loses this billion dollar case it will likely open the door for other lawsuits. There are already four other states waiting in the wings for their day in court with Purdue, all alleging that they were misled in OxyContin’s potential for addiction.

If you know of someone in need of an intervention for prescription painkillers like OxyContin, contact Family First today for more information.

Mike Loverde

As a Certified Intervention Professional (CIP), member of NAATP, NAADAC, and accredited by the Pennsylvania Certification Board, Mike Loverde knows first-hand what it’s like to live life with addiction. By overcoming it, he had a calling to work with others who struggle with drug and alcohol addictions—the people who use and the families who feel helpless watching them decay.

With thousands of interventions across the United States done and many more to come, Loverde continues to own the intervention space, since 2005, by working with medical doctors, psychiatrists, psychologists and others who need expert assistance for their patients who need intervention. To further his impact on behavioral health and maximize intervention effectiveness, Loverde is near completion of a Masters in Addiction Studies (MHS) accreditation, as well as a Licensed Independent Substance Abuse Counselor (LISAC), and is committed to attaining the designation of a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC).

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