Florida AG Pam Bondi Helps Launch Lawsuit Against Walgreens and CVS for Role in Opioid Crisis
This past week the State of Florida has launched a lawsuit against major pharmacy chains CVS and Walgreens in their role in the current opioid crisis. The suit states the two companies made “unconscionable efforts to increase the demand and supply of opioids into Florida.”
Pam Bondi, the current Attorney General for Florida, and her office stated they are not only filing a lawsuit against the pharmacies, but also Purdue Pharma, Endo Pharmaceuticals, Teva Pharmaceuticals, Insys Therapeutics, and names both Amerisource Bergen and Cardinal and McKesson as some of the major distributors. The suit states that all the listed defendants helped drive the opioid crisis and create an unneeded demand for painkillers and thus, increasing the supply of available prescription drugs. Both Walgreens and CVS are accused of failing their duties to prevent suspicious prescriptions of opioids from being fulfilled and dispensing what’s being considered to be an “unreasonable” amount of drugs.
Pam Bondi’s office commented “We will continue to pursue those companies that played a role in creating the opioid crisis. Thousands of Floridians have suffered as a result of the actions of the defendants.”
Since Florida state law dictates that pharmacists are supposed to refuse suspicious prescriptions, both retailers are under major scrutiny due to the sheer number of painkillers dispensed and sold by each company. In just two small areas of the state, Walgreens sold 3.3 million pills, whereas CVS gave out over 700 million painkiller doses over an 8-year period. Both companies were investigated by the DEA and paid large settlements in response to the administration’s allegations.
This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the current opioid crisis. If just two pharmacy chains in one state created this much damage, just think about how bad the situation really is on a national scale. If you put all the state’s statistics together, I’m willing to venture a guess that the numbers would be staggering, to say the least.
It’s obvious at this point that a fair amount of negligence in addition to intense monetary greed have been some of the largest driving forces behind the opioid problem. Now, synthetic fentanyl analogs are all over most towns across the country and killing over a hundred people each day.
As the weeks and months pass, the death toll rises higher and higher, with no end in sight. While I think it’s great that state governments are attempting to hold pharmaceutical companies, physicians, and drug stores accountable for their actions and their role in creating our current drug crisis, I’m wondering if it’s too little, too late. Many families have already buried their loved ones, never to see their smiling faces again after their addiction to prescription opioids ended their lives. I’m glad State officials like Pam Bondi are stepping up to the plate and are trying to tame this monster because if they don’t do it, I don’t know who will.