CVS, Walgreens, Walmart appeal Ohio $650M opioid ruling

CVS, Walgreens and Walmart have appealed a ruling that ordered them to pay $650 million for fueling the opioid epidemic in two Ohio counties, arguing the case should be thrown out or a new trial introduced, NBC affiliate WFMJ reported Dec. 5.

Arguing in the U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, lawyers for the three pharmacy chains said there was never any proof the companies had violated the federal Controlled Substances Act through dispensing the drugs. It was also unfair to target these companies and therefore allow other pharmacy chains not to contribute to any of the fines imposed, the report added.

If the case centering on the two counties — Turnbull and Lake — were expanded to all other 86 counties in the state, the judgment would total more than $17 billion, or approximately $496 billion if scaled nationwide.

The appeal news comes a year after the ruling in Ohio was handed down. The chains have agreed to other settlements, as have other pharmacy groups.

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