The jury discovered the drug producer Teva fueled opioid dependancy in NY – Enterprise Insurance

(Reuters) – Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. fueled opioid addiction in New York state, a jury found Thursday, a setback for a company still facing thousands of other opioid-related lawsuits in the United States.

The verdict, delivered after nearly six months of litigation in New York State in a state and two boroughs case, does not include claims for damages that will be determined later. The jury deliberated more than eight days before reaching a verdict.

Teva stock fell 40 cents, or 4.7%, to $ 8.03 in afternoon trading.

New York attorney general Letitia James called the result "an important day" for the state and for "every family and community torn apart by opioids." Jayne Conroy and Hunter Shkolnik, representing Suffolk and Nassau counties respectively, also hailed it as a "massive victory".

In a statement, the company said, "Teva Pharmaceuticals disagrees with today's outcome and will prepare for a prompt appeal and continue to pursue a malpractice." The state and counties had "no evidence of medically unnecessary prescriptions, suspicious or diverted orders." " submitted.

New York and the boroughs had accused the Israel-based drug maker of misleading marketing practices that fueled opioid addiction in the state, including promoting drugs for off-label use.

They focused on Actiq and Fentora, cancer pain relievers from Cephalon Inc., a company that Teva bought in 2011, as well as generic opioids sold by Teva.

The New York lawsuit is one of more than 3,300 lawsuits filed by state, local, and Native American tribal governments across the country accusing drug manufacturers of minimizing addiction to opioid pain medication and causing dealers and pharmacies to ignore warnings, into which they were diverted illegal channels.

The judge in the case is still examining Teva's complaint of malpractice after a state attorney cited inaccurate opioid prescription statistics in his closing argument. If the ruling stands, it could put pressure on Teva to reach a state-wide settlement with other states and local governments on opioid claims.

In court, Teva attributed an increase in opioid prescriptions to a change in health care standards that focused on pain management in the early 1990s.

It also said its opioid sales were in compliance with federal and New York state regulations. The jury saw complicity on the part of the state and assigned it a responsibility of 10%.

US officials said the health crisis had resulted in nearly 500,000 deaths from opioid overdose in two decades by 2019. More than 100,000 people died of drug overdoses in the 12 months ending April 2021, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in a report in November, a record largely attributable to deaths from opioids like fentanyl .

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