Ohio takes steps toward resolution of opioid litigation

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine reports the state has begun settlement talks with opioid-makers it has sued alleging illegal marketing, and will meet with a federal judge urging settlement of hundreds of similar suits, in early steps toward resolution of the litigation.

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine reports the state has begun settlement talks with opioid-makers it has sued alleging illegal marketing, and will meet with a federal judge urging settlement of hundreds of similar suits, in early steps toward resolution of the litigation. DeWine's staff held separate settlement discussions with Johnson & Johnson and Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Wednesday. "We outlined with them where we feel Ohio needs help—in prevention, education and treatment, as well as the huge problem we’re having with our foster-care system because so many of the parents are addicted," says DeWine. Teva said in a statement, "We appreciate the opportunity to meet with representatives of the Ohio AG’s office to discuss this important public health issue." Johnson & Johnson said: "While we consider the specifics of our discussions with state attorneys general to be confidential, we continue to maintain that allegations made in lawsuits against our company are baseless and unsubstantiated. ... At the same time we recognize that opioid abuse and addiction are serious public health issues that must be addressed...we look forward to being a part of the ongoing dialogue." U.S. District Judge Dan Polster, who is overseeing more than 200 of the opioid cases filed in federal court, has invited DeWine to attend a meeting with the parties involved in federal court. DeWine says he will attend the meeting scheduled for January 31 in Cleveland.

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