Retail Giant To Pay Over $1 Billion In Opioid Settlement

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Jason Cohen Contributor
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Retail giant Kroger will pay up to $1.2 billion in a nationwide opioid settlement, according to a press release by the company.

The settlement will cover most of the opioid claims against Kroger by U.S. states and Native American Tribes, who will receive $36 million from the company, according to the press release. The company asserts it has been instrumental in fighting opioid misuse and is not acknowledging any wrongdoing in the crisis.

“This is an important milestone in the Company’s efforts to resolve the pending opioid litigation and support abatement efforts,” Kroger stated. “Kroger has long served as a leader in combatting opioid abuse and remains committed to patient safety.”

“This settlement is not an admission of wrongdoing or liability by Kroger and Kroger will continue to vigorously defend against any other claims and lawsuits relating to opioids that the final agreement does not resolve,” it added. (RELATED: West Virginia Settles Opioid Lawsuit With Walgreens For $83 Million)

Governments and other entities have filed thousands of lawsuits against drug companies and retailers for their alleged roles in the opioid epidemic. Almost 645,000 people have died from overdoses involving opioids from 1999 to 2021, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

In August, the U.S. Supreme Court paused a $6 billion opioid settlement that the Sackler Family’s Purdue Pharma had reached in May that would have granted immunity to the family.

Despite the multi-billion dollar fortune the Sackler family gained through Purdue Pharma and its drug OxyContin, which allegedly played a role in launching the opioid epidemic, a Daily Caller News Foundation investigation found no evidence the family is donating money to help victims combat their addictions as of 2017.

Kroger previously consented to pay West Virginia $68 million in a settlement regarding claims that it contributed to the opioid crisis by inadequately regulating its prescription medication distribution, according to Reuters.

Kroger did not immediately respond to the DCNF’s request for comment.

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