Baltimore County to file opioid epidemic lawsuit against drugmakers, distributors

Baltimore County will file a lawsuit against drugmakers and drug distributors to recoup county funds expended in response to the opioid crisis, according to an announcement made by Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz Monday.

The county, which plans to file the suit in federal District Court, will look to achieve consolidation with similar cases filed by local governments. The county has entered into a retainer agreement with a law firm representing counties and cities in Arizona, Florida and Michigan in similar litigation.

"The opioid crisis has led to a significant increase of overdoses from heroin and prescription drug abuse," said Mr. Kamenetz. "We believe that the pharmaceutical industry pressured and cajoled physicians into prescribing opioids for chronic pain, and vastly misrepresented the risk of addiction. The desire to increase profits on the part of drug companies is a leading cause of our nation's health crisis, and we must fight back."

Mr. Kamenetz did not identify the companies that will be listed as defendants in the lawsuit.

More articles on opioids: 
Increased opioid prescriptions linked to higher foster care rates in Florida 
Joint pain patients prescribed opioids more likely to report high care satisfaction 
Scientists advance toward creation of nonaddictive opioids: 5 things to know

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