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Kanner & Whiteley Files Suit Against More than 30 Companies for Knowingly Defrauding Insurance Company Through Unlawful Opioid Sales

Kanner & Whiteley, L.L.C, along with Baron & Budd P.C. and Spangenberg Shibley & Liber, have filed suit on behalf of Medical Mutual of Ohio against more than 30 pharmaceutical manufacturers, pharmaceutical distributors, retail pharmacies and other medical companies in the drug distribution chain, alleging that each company played a role in a coordinated and fraudulent scheme to profit from the unlawful sales of opioid drugs, such as such as hydrocodone and oxycodone.

The suit alleges that MMO bore the brunt of the enormous financial costs associated with the excessive number of opioid prescriptions that flooded the state of Ohio in recent years. The suit details the Defendants’ scheme to encourage the use of opioid drugs to treat conditions for which the drugs were not FDA-approved, and the methods by which the Defendants knowingly concealed information related to the risks associated with opioid medication, including addiction and safety concerns. The alleged fraud has not only created a public-health crisis, but has also increased addiction-related treatment costs for MMO. The suit states that many MMO members who were prescribed opioid medications for non-indicated and unsafe uses received little therapeutic benefit from the drugs and were subjected to life threatening side effects.

The suit represents one of the largest private insurer cases filed to date against drug companies for creating the opioid epidemic. Medical Mutual of Ohio v. Purdue Pharma L.P., et al., 18-cv-00716 (N.D. Ohio).

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