CVS and pharmaceutical companies are to pay Florida a combined $860 million as part of the settlement for an opioid epidemic case, state officials announced Wednesday. Florida began filing “thousands of lawsuits against companies that make and distribute the drugs” in 2010, reports abc News.
The lawsuits were seeking to hold the pharmaceutical companies accountable for the opioid epidemic which has been linked to over 500,000 deaths in the United States over the past two decades.
The death count includes those from prescription painkillers such as OxyContin and generic oxycodone as well as illicit drugs such as heroin and illegally produced fentanyl. A “handful” of cases have gone to trial, with may settling out of court, particularly over the last year.
Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody announced CVS Health Corp and CVS Pharmacy Inc. will pay the state $484 million, Teva Pharmaceuticals Industries Ltd. agreed to pay $195 million and Allergan PLC more than $134 million.
“The opioid epidemic is wreaking havoc on Florida families,” Moody said in a news release. “The monies secured from CVS, Teva, Allergan and Endo will help further our efforts to remediate the harm and suffering of Floridians.”
The money from CVS, Moody added, will be divided between the state and Florida cities and counties, which were beset by opioid overdoses and illicit drug use during the “pill mill” epidemic of a decade ago. The money must be spent on tackling the opioid crisis.
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Border Crisis by the numbers: in January agents seize 500lbs drugs and 70 criminals with outstanding warrants
The first month of 2023 at the southern border is already looking bleak; just take a look at the numbers. U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers in El Paso, Texas have seized over 500 pounds of hard drugs in January alone.
Additionally, the agency apprehended 62 people they were able to identify as having outstanding arrest warrants. Among the criminals were sex offenders.
The devastating numbers are not surprising, given that in December, the El Paso mayor declared a sate of emergency “after record numbers of people were released onto city streets and sidewalks by the Biden administration” reports The Center Square.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott also “sent 400 National Guard troops to restore order and provide humanitarian assistance” adds the media outlet. Border Patrol data showed in December, 55,766 illegal foreign nationals were apprehended in the El Paso Sector.
There were also 32,632 known and recorded gotaways in December, meaning they were able to evade getting captured by law and immigration officials. law enforcement officers told The Center Square that despite the skyrocket high numbers, “these seizures and apprehensions represent a fraction of the amount of people and drugs being trafficked to the southern border between ports of entry.”
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