Indiana Gets National Opioid Settlement
Over the past two decades, the opioid epidemic has devastated the entire nation. But now, there is finally some retribution for the years of suffering. McKinsey is shelling out nearly $600 million as part of a multi-state opioid settlement. McKinsey has recently been under investigation for the organization’s role in the opioid crisis. The settlement encompasses 47 states, the District of Columbia, and five territories.
Washington State and West Virginia received separate compensation packages to the tune of $13 million and $10 million, respectively. Nevada, meanwhile, is continuing to pursue an additional investigation, according to the office of the state’s attorney general.
Who’s to Blame for the Indiana Opioid Epidemic?
McKinsey, a high-powered worldwide management consulting firm, played a significant role in the opioid crisis that swept the nation. A torrent of lawsuits unearthed countless documents and emails, revealing McKinsey’s role in the national epidemic. Ultimately, this is what laid the foundations for the opioid settlement. Over 20 years, McKinsey Consulting and Purdue Pharma collaborated to drive sales of OxyContin, a Purdue product.
Despite knowing its addictive and highly potent analgesic properties, McKinsey and Purdue continued to hawk the drug to doctors. McKinsey and Purdue intentionally minimized the risks of OxyContin, reassuring medical authorities that the drug was safe for long-term use. In 2007, Purdue pled guilty to federal criminal charges for their dangerous and misleading drug-peddling. However, even that didn’t put a stop to their behavior.
Evidence revealed that McKinsey and Purdue worked closely together, the former counseling the latter to sell the lucrative drug in high dosages, despite risks and prior warnings. McKinsey also advised Purdue that the drug maker could “band together” with other opioid manufacturers to ward off “strict treatment” by the FDA.
Alarmingly, McKinsey effectively proposed a powerful and legally-untouchable pharmaceutical cabal. The end goal, it seems, was to collectively profit from the pain, suffering, and addiction of those prescribed the drug. McKinsey helped to propagate a lie that trickled down from drug manufacturers to regulators, then to doctors and pharmacists, and finally, to patients. Ultimately, the patients suffered most, and this deception helped fuel an opioid crisis that persists today.
The Results of the Opioid Lawsuit Settlement
To this day, McKinsey refuses to admit any wrongdoing or fault in the crisis. Purdue has paid – and will continue to pay – for its role in the affair, as the company has gone bankrupt. McKinsey has, however, agreed to court-ordered restrictions regarding work with certain addictive narcotic companies. The consulting firm will also retain its emails for five years and inform state contracts about potential conflicting interests during bidding.
As part of McKinsey’s $600 million settlement payout, Indiana will receive $12.5 million. Now that the money has been paid, the question remains: what is Indiana doing to combat the opioid problem? Despite the payout, no amount of money can undo the hurt nor eliminate the crisis that still rages across America. All we can do is try to move forward while continuing to hold those in power accountable.