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Minneapolis sues opioid manufacturers and distributors



On Friday, Minneapolis sued a group of opioid manufacturers and distributors and joined a long list of governments in Minnesota and across the country recently taking legal action against the companies.

The city's lawsuit targets more than a dozen companies that propagate their efforts to promote prescription opioid drugs such as OxyContin, triggering an addiction crisis that is straining the city's resources. The trial comes several months after county lawyers from all over Minnesota, including Hennepin County, have announced their intentions to sue the companies.

And there follows unsuccessful efforts by the legislature to combat a "penny-pin" tax on opioids and respond to the addiction problem.

"With legislative efforts to hold state and federal pharmaceutical companies accountable, our city is pursuing its own legal course and bringing the fight directly to opioid manufacturers and distributors," says Mayor Jacob Frey in a statement. "For years, they knowingly helped spur this crisis ̵

1; providing resources and support to repair the damage."

The lawsuit underscores Purdue Pharma's development of OxyContin in the 1990s and subsequent promotion of these and similar drugs for common pain problems – misrepresenting their addictive properties.

"By providing misleading information to doctors about rare addictions and opioids that are safe even in high doses, then putting pressure on them to prescribe their products by arguing, inter alia, that nobody should have pain [manufacturers] created a population of addicted patients seeking opioids at unprecedented rates, "states the city's complaint.

Purdue officials did not comment on any news on Friday.

City attorney Susan Segal said the city's goals are twofold: impose sanctions on businesses and compensate the city for the additional services they provide. For example, the number of Opioid calls to the Minneapolis Fire Department has increased by 13,000 or 59 percent since 2010

"This has cost our city government money in response to the response of the fire department and the police," Segal said

For years, the Minneapolis Fire Department has administered about 500 doses of the life-saving drug naloxone in response to an increase in overdose, city fire chief said.

The lawsuit focuses on the impact on Minneapolis' Little Earth Community, an American public housing development near Franklin Avenue that was shattered by overdose deaths and needles were discovered in nearby sandboxes Suit and teens needed to learn how to revive over-excited family members. [JoleneJonespresidentoftheLittleEarthResidentsAssociationsaidin2016onenightin2016ninepeopleoverdoseminutes-withonedeath

"We need help in our community," Jones said, "and the drug companies do not care what they did to us."

More than 100 similar lawsuits were filed last November by Governing Magazine Governments across the country have submitted many more lawsuits since then.

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