According to the San Francisco City Attorney, Walgreens will pay San Francisco close to $230 million to resolve a dispute about the drugstore chain's distribution of opioids.
Over the following 14 years, the city will get $229 million, with the most of the money arriving in the first eight. In opioid-related lawsuits, the settlement represents the greatest sum that any city has ever gotten from a single firm, although it is far less than the $8.1 billion that San Francisco had requested.
The historic deal guarantees that Walgreens will be held responsible for the disaster they caused and that our city will receive the necessary funding to fight the opioid epidemic and provide relief for our neighbourhoods.
2018 saw San Francisco file lawsuits against Walgreens, Purdue Pharma, and other distributors and producers of opioids for their part in the opioid crisis. A court said in 2022 that Walgreens had made a significant contribution to the city's opioid problem. The evidence established that Walgreens did not give its chemists enough time, personnel, or resources to review these prescriptions thoroughly.
A Walgreens representative contests responsibility and the settlement deal makes no acknowledgment of guilt. He continued by saying that the business never produced or sold opioids, nor did we provide them to online pharmacies and pill factories.
According to the lawyer, the number of overdose deaths in the city caused by opioids increased by about 500% between 2014 and 2020.
According to the hospital's chief of emergency medicine, 30 emergency department visits per day at the city's Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Centre are presently drug-related. Manufacturers Endo, Allergan, Teva, and Johnson & Johnson; retail drugstore chains, CVS and Walmart; and distributors McKesson, Cardinal, and AmerisourceBergen have all paid settlements to the city attorney in the past.
The Opioid Settlement Tracker, based in Seattle, has compared these opioid cases to the $246 billion that major tobacco companies agreed to pay after 46 states sued them in the 1990s. San Francisco's opioid settlement is one of 3,300 cases that have awarded states, counties, or cities more than $54 billion to date.