State Files Suit Against Pharmaceutical Company
INDIANAPOLIS - Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill has filed suit against a Connecticut-based pharmaceutical manufacturer. The lawsuit alleges Purdue Pharma, which makes opioid products such as OxyContin, played a key role in the state's opioid crisis by misrepresenting the risks and benefits of opioids.
The lawsuit specifically targets Purdue Pharma LP, Purdue Pharma Inc. and The Purdue Frederick Company, collectively known as Purdue Pharma. In a news release, Hill's office cites the allegations against Purdue Pharma which "depict the lengths to which the company sought to increase profits by promoting its opioids in Indiana," such as:
- Minimizing or denying the risk of addiction
- Exaggerating the benefits of the use of opioids for treatment of chronic pain
- Denying or failing to disclose the increased dangers of opioids at higher doses
- Targeting elderly and opioid-naïve patients to create a new market of long-term customers
- Spreading the above misrepresentations to Indiana’s medical community and to consumers
- Engaging in an elaborate deception by enlisting what appeared to be independent entities carrying neutral information that were actually paid, funded or otherwise controlled by Purdue to publicize statements known to be unsupported by facts or scientific research
"Following my office’s thorough investigation of this company’s activity in Indiana, this lawsuit demands Purdue Pharma answer for its violations of Indiana law," said Hill. "This litigation is one additional tool in the state’s arsenal to combat the opioid crisis. My office is committed to holding companies that engage in unfair, abusive, and deceptive practices in Indiana accountable for their misconduct. The lawsuit against Purdue Pharma is the culmination of nearly two years of exhaustive investigation, depositions of former employees, interviews of prescribers across the state, and thorough review of company documents."
The lawsuit was filed in Marion County and alleges Purdue Pharma violated the state's Deceptive Consumer Sales Act, Prescription Drug Discount and Benefit Cards Statute, False Claims Act, and Medicaid False Claims Act. The state is seeking maximum penalties, treble damages, costs, and an order directing Purdue Pharma to "stop its unlawful conduct."
You can view the lawsuit in the document below: