More than 175 Americans “die every single day as a result of” Purdue Pharma’s conduct, Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter has claimed.
And in Oklahoma, the number of people “infected” by the “criminal conduct” of Purdue and other pharmaceutical manufacturers “has resulted in more annual deaths than motor vehicle accidents and [more] than all other drug-related deaths combined.”
Overdoses involving prescription pain relievers “now kill more Americans than heroin and cocaine combined,” one lawsuit against Purdue Pharma relates. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, almost 5,500 people start to misuse prescription painkillers every day.
Purdue Pharma’s marketing efforts have been blamed for contributing to an addiction and overdose crisis linked to 470,000 deaths in the United States over the past two decades, the Associated Press reported.
OxyContin “constitutes roughly 30% of the entire market for analgesic drugs (i.e., painkillers),” a federal court document relates. “Since 2009, Purdue’s national annual sales of OxyContin have fluctuated between $2.47 billion and $3.1 billion – skyrocketing from $49 million in its first full year on the market (1996).”
A bipartisan congressional investigation report released last week discovered that key players in the opioid industry have spent $65 million since 1997 funding non-profits that advocate treating pain with medications, including prescription painkillers.