Marketing firm pays $8 million to Arizona in opioid settlement

Another company will be paying millions to the Arizona state government over the opioid epidemic.

Publicis Health is doling out $8 million to the state for the role it played in opioid marketing for Purdue Pharma. The money to Arizona is a small fraction of the $350 million settlement it will owe to different states, according to the New York Times

“This settlement marks another step in our efforts at holding accountable those who have contributed to Arizona’s opioid crisis,” Mayes said in a statement. “While settlement dollars cannot reverse the harm caused to so many Arizonans and their families, they will help substantially in our state’s ongoing prevention and recovery efforts.” 

The firm helped sell Purdue Pharma's Oxycontin to doctors and other healthcare providers using questionable methods, according to a news release.

The Center Square reported in December that the state got 55,000 units of naloxone, a drug intended to reverse the effects of an opioid overdose, as part of a national settlement with Teva Pharmaceuticals. Teva is also paying out $85 million to the state of Arizona over the course of 13 years. 

According to the Arizona Department of Health Services website, over five people are estimated to die daily in the state as the result of opioid overdoses. Much of this stems from either prescribed opioids or illicit fentanyl. When it comes to fentanyl, drug trafficking into the United States from Mexico continues to be a top concern of border security stakeholders, including authorities. 

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