A coalition of 15 states agreed to a deal with drug maker Purdue Pharma, which could soon lead to a $4.5 billion settlement over the company’s role in the U.S. opioid epidemic.
The states agreed to no longer oppose Purdue Pharma’s bankruptcy plan while the pharmaceutical company agreed to publicly release a trove of millions of documents, according to a court filing late Wednesday night. The Sackler family, which owns the company, would pay an additional $50 million under the settlement.
The agreement will be tacked onto a broader proposal that is set to be voted on by more than 3,000 plaintiffs, The New York Times reported. In addition to the states, plaintiffs include cities, counties and tribes that sued the company over its role in boosting its painkiller OxyContin, the cause of thousands of opioid deaths.
Ohio State University said it has reached settlements with parties in 11 of 18 lawsuits filed against the school related to accused sex abuser Richard Strauss, but the agreements do not require taxpayer funds.
The lawsuits represent “nearly half of the individuals who have brought claims against the university,” the school said in a news release.
The settlements did not use taxpayer, tuition or donor funds, according to the release. Funds come from existing institutional discretionary funding.
The day before the bellwether trial of Cuyahoga and Summit Counties versus four major pharmaceutical companies began, the drug manufacturers settled. The issue for the counties was the significant cost of the opioid epidemic, believed to have been fueled by the drug companies. Earlier this summer Attorney General Dave Yost tried to force the court to consolidate the counties’ cases under his jurisdiction, and he voiced concern with the settlement.