San Francisco reaches $58 million opioid settlement with Teva and Allergan

July 12 (Reuters) – Teva Pharmaceutical Industries (TEVA.TA) and AbbVie’s Allergan unit on Tuesday reached a $58 million settlement with the city of San Francisco just before the completion of a trial over allegations that they fueled an opioid epidemic in the city.

As part of the deal announced by City Attorney David Chiu, Israel-based Teva will pay $25 million in cash and contribute $20 million of the anti-overdose drug Narcan. AbbVie will pay $13 million.

“This will provide significant resources to help with education, prevention and treatment, and the addition of tens of millions of dollars in overdose reversal medication will save lives in the Bay Area,” said Paul Geller, an attorney who represented the city in the negotiations. the rule.

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Teva’s settlement also resolves the city’s claims against drug distributor Anda Inc, which is owned by Teva.

San Francisco will receive $54 million, while $4 million will go to attorneys’ fees.

“Today’s settlement is another crucial step in providing lifesaving treatment to people suffering from opioid addiction,” Teva said in a statement.

AbbVie upheld the settlement and said its discontinued branded opioid business had minimal market share nationwide.

The settlement was reached ahead of closing arguments in a trial that began on April 25. San Francisco will proceed with closing arguments against retail drugstore chain Walgreens on Tuesday, with the last defendant remaining in the case.

Parent company Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA.O) has denied any wrongdoing. Teva and Allergan have not admitted any wrongdoing under the settlement.

San Francisco has accused Walgreens, Teva, Allergan and Anda of creating “public nuisance” by flooding the city with prescription opioids and failing to prevent the drugs from being diverted for illegal purposes.

The companies argued that they were selling legal drugs prescribed by doctors.

The lawsuit was selected as a landmark case against drugmakers, distributors and pharmacies, testing the strength of claims in thousands of lawsuits filed by state and local governments. In other similar trials, drugmakers have also been accused of downplaying the risks of addiction and overdose in marketing their painkillers.

San Francisco has been hit hard by the opioid crisis, which has caused more than 500,000 overdose deaths nationwide over the past two decades, according to US data. Opioid-related health issues account for 25% of emergency room visits at the city’s largest public hospital, according to a court filing at the start of the trial.

The San Francisco lawsuit, filed in 2018, initially included claims against drugmakers Purdue Pharma LP, Johnson & Johnson (JNJ.N) and Endo International Plc, and the three largest U.S. drug distributors – McKesson Corp (MCK .N), Cardinal Health Inc and AmerisourceBergen Corp (ABC.N).

The city settled with these defendants before trial. He signed a $26 billion nationwide settlement with J&J and drug distributors, and agreed to back Purdue Pharma’s bankruptcy plan.

Teva has attempted to reach a national settlement of its opioid liability.

Teva chief executive Kare Schultz said May 3 that the company expects to reach a nationwide deal by the end of 2022 and pay about $2.6 billion over 15 years. Read more

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Reporting by Deitrich Knauth and Brendan Pierson in New York; Editing by Mark Potter and Bill Berkrot

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