Keep up the pressure on drug companies (editorial)
Drug companies that pushed opioids for pain relief while down-pedaling the addiction risks deserve to be sued, claims this News Journal editorial, and Delaware's involvement in a wave of lawsuits is commendable. "Thanks to Attorney General Matt Denn, we're one of the few states to individually pursue legal action, and now New Castle County and the city of Dover are both exploring their own lawsuits. Our state can't win this fight alone, but it's important that we do our part." The suits are just getting started and may take years, so "some of the elected officials pursuing them [may not] be in office" when they are resolved. Notably, Denn isn't running for re-election, so "candidates vying to replace him" should "be clear with voters about how they intend to keep up the pace." If DE does strike it rich, "state leaders should immediately dedicate [the proceeds] to addiction fighting efforts," resisting "the temptation to use 'free money' to balance the state's structurally flawed budget." Also, efforts to fight opioid addiction should start now, not be put off until the suits pay off. Doctors should "begin more seriously considering alternatives to [opioids]" and, pursuant to recent moves by state regulators, "local healthcare providers will be limiting the number of painkillers that they dole out to first-time patients."
There is plenty of blame to go around re opioid addiction, and suing the "deep pockets" in this situation (the drug companies) isn't necessarily justifiable. Suits by NCC and Dover seem particularly questionable!