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Appalachia Health News tells the story of our health challenges and how we overcome them throughout the region. 

Rite Aid Agrees To Opioid Settlement

Marketing payments to doctors by makers of opioids have declined.
Wallace Garrison
/
Getty Images
Marketing payments to doctors by makers of opioids have declined.

West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey announced a settlement Thursday with the pharmacy chain Rite Aid that could provide up to $30 million dollars for recovery efforts in the state. The lawsuit alleged that Rite Aid contributed to the state’s opioid crisis by oversupplying addictive pills.

The West Virginia First Memorandum of Understanding, or MOU, is an agreement by counties and cities on how to spend funds received from opioid settlements. Following the MOU, the settlement funds from Rite Aid go to state and local programs for the reduction of opioid addiction.

In May, Teva and Allergan settled for $161.5 million; in April, drug manufacturers Johnson & Johnson settled for $99 million; and in March, Endo Health Solutions settled for $26 million.

In a July ruling, the three big drug distributors McKesson, Cardinal Health, and AmerisourceBergen were found not liable in a case brought by Cabell County and the City of Huntington. In August, the same distributors settled for $400 million with other cities and counties in the state.

Although Rite Aid settled their case, a trial is set in September as part of the Mass Litigation Panel for remaining pharmacy defendants.

Part-time Huntington Reporter, dadkins@wvpublic.org

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