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Washington state AG Bob Ferguson, Seattle sue drug companies over opioid deaths

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Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson and Seattle City Attorney Pete Holmes on Thursday filed separate lawsuits against pharmaceutical companies, accusing them of fueling the state's ongoing opioid epidemic. The city of Seattle’s suit includes Teva Pharmaceuticals and oxycodone hydrochloride (OxyContin) maker Purdue Pharma.

Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson and Seattle City Attorney Pete Holmes on Thursday filed separate lawsuits against pharmaceutical companies, accusing them of fueling the state's ongoing opioid epidemic. The city of Seattle’s suit includes Teva Pharmaceuticals and oxycodone hydrochloride (OxyContin) maker Purdue Pharma. Ferguson's lawsuit involves only Purdue, claiming the company downplayed the risk of taking the drug. Both suits are filed in King County Superior Court, and allege that the pharmaceutical companies contributed to the drugs being over-prescribed by doctors. The state's suit seeks to force Purdue to forfeit profits made in Washington over the sale of opioids, while Holmes said Seattle’s lawsuit would seek to recover costs to the city because of the opioid epidemic. Purdue issued a statement Thursday in response to the lawsuits, saying it was seeking motions to dismiss similar suits in other states. "We are deeply troubled by the opioid crisis and we are dedicated to being part of the solution. As a company grounded in science, we must balance patient access to FDA-approved medicines, while working collaboratively to solve this public health challenge," the statement said. "We vigorously deny these allegations and look forward to the opportunity to present our defense."

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https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/health/washington-state-ag-bob-ferguson-seattle-sue-oxycontin-maker-over-opioid-deaths/

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