Opioids in the US

Posted by Dan DeChellis.

“Purdue Pharma, US States Agree to New Opioid Settlement,” by Geoff Mulvihill, explores how this pharmaceutical company was recently put under pressure regarding their OxyContin products. OxyContin is highly addictive, which means it is a great way to make money at the expense of others wellbeing, like any other drug. So, in order to hold the company accountable, a settlement was reached. A 750-million-dollar fund was created that victims and survivors would have access to were they to file a claim against Purdue. This is a way of compensating the victims affected by the opioid epidemic, however through the eyes of Purdue it is likely a way to get out of any more serious legal repercussion. What is the cost for someone’s life? 

Among the dollar amount settlement, there were also other agreements with the family, such as not being able to fight when other companies dissociate and that this deal would not shield them from any potential criminal charges. Although there likely won’t be any. Mulvihill quotes, “’No lawsuit, no settlement or any amount of money can ever be enough. The lives Purdue stole, they can never be returned,’ California Attorney General Rob Bonta said in a video news conference Thursday” (1). This outrage proves the widespread feeling that their money is not good enough. They purposefully sell these drugs as a means for stable income off addiction. So the question must be asked, if they value lives or the money more. Of course, the answer is likely to be an obvious one, but what can be done about this greed? Can money be enough to help those in addiction? 

In conclusion, “Purdue Pharma, US States Agree to New Opioid Settlement,” by Geoff Mulvihill perfectly captures the magnitude of this case. While this 750-million-dollar settlement is certainly better than nothing, as aforementioned, it still must be questioned. What is the cost for someone’s life, in the eyes of a company like this?  It can only be hoped that those who lost loved ones will see this sufficient, however, I doubt it to be the case judging by the reaction from California Attorney General Rob Bonta. This is an important topic to explore because of the worldwide reach of the Opioid epidemic, and how companies such as Purdue are using this legal drug to exploit its customers. 

Dan is a business major at the Stillman School of Business, Seton Hall University, Class of 2025.

Works Cited

Mulvihill, Geoff. “Purdue Pharma, US States Agree to New Opioid Settlement.” USNews, 3 Mar. 2022, https://www.usnews.com/news/business/articles/2022-03-03/purdue-pharma-us-states-agree-to-new-opioid-settlement.