MetroHealth sues opioid makers to recoup addiction care costs

Cleveland-based MetroHealth is suing opioid manufacturers, including Purdue Pharma and Teva Pharmaceuticals, in an effort to reclaim care costs for overdose and opioid-addicted patients, reports.

"As the healthcare provider for all of Cuyahoga county's population, we are unfortunately in the position to see some of the most devastating results of the opioid epidemic," said Joan Papp, MD, who leads MetroHealth's office of opioid safety.

The health system's filing names about a dozen opioid drug manufacturers, accusing them of deceptive marketing practices that led physicians to believe opioids are not as addictive as they are.

MetroHealth alleges it has incurred substantial costs in caring for those affected by overdoses and drug addiction, including increased hospitalizations, longer patient stays for addiction treatment and neonatal care for opioid-exposed newborns.

The filing does not specify a dollar amount for damages.

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