Florida will receive $40 million as part of a $573 million settlement between McKinsey & Company and dozens of states because of the global consulting giant’s role in the opioid epidemic, according to court documents.
Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody said Thursday the agreement will bring “millions of dollars into our communities, fighting the opioid epidemic, at a time when resources in Florida are very stressed, very limited.” The settlement between McKinsey and 47 states and five territories says that $558.9 million “will be used, to the extent practicable, to remediate the harms caused to the settling states and their citizens by the opioid epidemic within each state and to recover the costs incurred by the settling state in investigating and pursuing these claims.”
The agreement came after lawsuits across the nation revealed that McKinsey worked to help boost sales of Purdue Pharma’s powerful OxyContin pain medication amid the opioid epidemic. “They strategized ways to push higher-dose, more-lucrative opioid prescriptions, even in the middle of this devastating epidemic,” Moody told reporters. In the agreement, McKinsey did not admit to wrongdoing. The company agreed to restrictions on consulting about certain controlled substances and pledged to create a public database with thousands of pages of documents related to opioid sales and distribution.
Florida also is seeking an untold amount of damages in a lawsuit against pharmaceutical manufacturers, distributors and drug-store chains Walgreens Inc. and CVS. A jury trial in that lawsuit is set to begin in Pasco County circuit court on April 4, 2022.
“Seventeen people a day in Florida are dying as a result of the opioid epidemic. It is still a public health emergency, and while we are tackling COVID-19, we have to remain vigilant and focused on saving lives in Florida,” Moody said Thursday.