Kentucky AG Sues Walgreens Over Opioid Crisis

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Evie Fordham Politics and Health Care Reporter
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Kentucky’s attorney general is suing pharmacy giant Walgreens for contributing to its opioid epidemic by dispensing “opioids at such an alarming rate,” stated the lawsuit released Thursday.

“My job is to hold accountable anyone who harms our families,” said the state AG Andy Beshear at a press briefing on Thursday. “While Walgreens’ slogan was ‘at the corner of happy and healthy,’ they have significantly harmed the health of our families in fueling the opioid epidemic.” (RELATED: Big Pharma Accused Of Flooding Small Town With 20.8 Million Opioid Painkillers)

Kentucky joins states like states like Florida, which is suing opioid manufacturers like Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc., and Delaware, which filed a lawsuit naming Purdue Pharma, CVS and Walgreens.

Walgreens “overrode its own safeguard systems and raised its own opioid order thresholds” and created “public nuisance of historic proportions” in Kentucky starting in 2006, the suit alleges.

The attorney general’s office cannot release the number of opioid pills Walgreens has dispensed in the state since 2006 due to a confidentiality agreement. Walgreens declined to comment to The Daily Caller News Foundation because of the pending litigation. (RELATED: Walden: Drug Distributor Sent Nearly 300,000 Opioids To A Small Pharmacy In One Month)

Kentucky had the third-highest drug overdose death rate in the nation in 2015, according to the lawsuit against Walgreens. Only West Virginia and New Hampshire had higher rates. Kentucky reported over 1,400 overdose deaths in 2016.

Follow Evie on Twitter @eviefordham.

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