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Cops & Courts, Health, Virginia

Hikma Pharmaceuticals to pay $150M for failure to monitor, report suspicious opioid orders

Rebecca Barnabi
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A multistate settlement in principle with opioid manufacturer Hikma Pharmaceuticals (Hikma) for its role in fueling the opioid crisis will provide $150 million to resolve claims by states and local communities.

Hikma produces a range of branded and generic opioid products and sells hundreds of millions of opioid doses every year. From 2006 to 2021, Hikma failed to monitor and report suspicious opioid orders from potentially illegal distributors, even while its personnel knew their systems to monitor suspicious orders were inadequate and prone to failure.

The settlement will provide $115 million in cash and $35 million in opioid addiction treatment medication. States that do not accept the medication will receive cash in lieu of product. Virginia is expected to receive approximately $2.16 million.

“It’s impossible to put a price on the devastation that opioid addiction has caused Virginians. But by holding opioid manufacturers accountable for their role in this epidemic, my office is able to support rehabilitation treatment and education for struggling Virginia communities,” said Virginia Attorney General Jason Miyares.

In a statement to the Augusta Free Press, Hikma said that the “settlement is not an admission of wrongdoing or liability and Hikma will continue to defend against any litigation that this settlement does not resolve.”

“I am pleased that we have been able to reach a settlement framework agreement that works for all parties, while providing clarity to all of our stakeholders in regard to ending these pending matters. This payment and product donation will directly support state and local efforts in addressing the impact of the opioid crisis in their communities,” Sam Park, Hikma’s General Counsel, said.

The settlement in principle was negotiated by the attorneys general of New York, California, Delaware, Tennessee, Utah and Virginia in coordination with an executive committee consisting of the attorneys general of Colorado, Idaho, Illinois, Massachusetts, North Carolina, Ohio and Oregon.

Rebecca Barnabi

Rebecca Barnabi

Rebecca J. Barnabi is the national editor of Augusta Free Press. A graduate of the University of Mary Washington, she began her journalism career at The Fredericksburg Free-Lance Star. In 2013, she was awarded first place for feature writing in the Maryland, Delaware, District of Columbia Awards Program, and was honored by the Virginia School Boards Association’s 2019 Media Honor Roll Program for her coverage of Waynesboro Schools. Her background in newspapers includes writing about features, local government, education and the arts.