State AGs Expand Opioid Investigation, Subpoena Distributors

September 25, 2017

A coalition of state attorneys general suing opioid manufacturers has expanded the investigation of marketing and sales practices to include several branded painkiller manufacturers and drug distributors.

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and the other AGs announced the coalition in June. Schneiderman and the 40 other coalition members are seeking documentation from three opioid distributors — AmerisourceBergen, McKesson and Cardinal Health — regarding their business practices. The three companies are responsible for 90 percent of opioid distribution nationwide. The investigation centers on whether they properly monitored and flagged suspicious orders.

Schneiderman announced this week that the attorneys general have served Purdue with a supplemental investigative subpoena. Schneiderman’s office has taken numerous other actions to address opioid abuse, including augmenting the state’s prescription drug monitoring program to give doctors up-to-date controlled substance prescription histories to reduce doctor shopping.

The broadened investigation covers drugmakers Purdue, Endo, Janssen, Allergan and Teva along with the three distributors, according to the coalition.

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