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Johnson & Johnson Sued For $2 Billion

Johnson & Johnson, a healthcare company that’s also the highest paid drug company in the world, is being charged for insurance fraud over opioids. Opioids are a class of highly addictive pain-reducing medications found in the opium poppy plant. Heroin, oxycodone, hydrocodone, fentanyl, and morphine are a few examples of opioids.

Opioid Epidemic

Allegedly, Johnson & Johnson and its affiliate, Janssen Pharmaceuticals, both played a huge role in the opioid crisis by encouraging doctors and patients to use addictive painkillers despite the risks. The misuse of opioids is an extremely serious matter that may result in addiction, as well as other national public health crises. These Schedule II narcotics relieve the body from any pain and makes people feel very relaxed. Prescription opioids are typically safe when taken for a minimal duration of time and when prescribed by a doctor. Due to the obsessive addictiveness of this drug, many people misuse opioids and tend to overdose. The misuse of opioids may lead to hypoxia, a threatening condition where not enough oxygen reaches the brain. Hypoxia can lead to lung diseases such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), emphysema, bronchitis, pneumonia, and pulmonary edema (fluid in the lungs), anemia, cyanide poisoning, a coma, permanent brain damage, or death. Overdoses involving prescription and illicit opioids take the lives of 128 people daily, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Johnson & Johnson and its affiliate, Janssen Pharmaceuticals allegedly downplayed the seriousness and safety of opioids to expand the opioid market. As a consequence, there is now an opioid crisis that caused hundreds of thousands of deaths and an innumerable amount of people addicted. There has also been a significant increase in healthcare costs.

New York’s Department of Financial Services V. Johnson & Johnson

Andrew Cuomo, Governor of New York, announced the insurance fraud claim against Johnson & Johnson and other related companies on Thursday, September 17. “The opioid crisis has taken too many lives and New York State will continue to take action against those who helped fuel this public health catastrophe and bring a measure of justice to families who have lost loved ones,” Governor Cuomo stated. New York’s Department of Financial Services filed the charges against this medical corporation and are suing to recover $2 billion in the lawsuit. According to the department, private insurance claims regarding opioid diagnosis rose 3,000% nationally and nearly 500%  in the State of New York between 2007 and 2014. As a result, New Yorkers who’ve had commercial health insurance had to overpay nearly 1.8 billion in premiums for the past 10 years.

Janssen Pharmaceuticals argued against the charges and stated how several studies show that the Duragesic patch gives a label warning and has less of a chance of becoming addictive. As claimed by the department, those said studies were inaccurate and defective.

The hearing will be held at the New York State Department of Financial Services office, One State Street, New York, New York, on the start of January 25, 2021

Contact A Personal Injury Lawyer Today!

If you or a loved one experienced any injuries or negative effects due to the use of opioid medications, it is best to call a qualified personal injury law firm for legal guidance. The Whitley Law Firm is committed to providing the best assistance possible to those who suffered from personal injuries. Contact us today to possibly obtain compensation for your injury and for a free case evaluation from an experienced attorney.