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Ohio Sues Four Drug Companies over Opioid Crisis

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STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

Ohio has joined communities around the state, along with cities, counties and some other states in suing four companies that distributed prescription painkillers that they say helped fuel the deadly opioid crisis. And  two of the targets of the suit are Ohio-based.

Attorney General Mike DeWine hinted at a news conference in October that this suit was coming when he said he’d sent a letter to major prescription pill distributors, asking them to help fund the fight against the epidemic that’s killing well over nine people a day in Ohio.

“These are the drug distributors, who flooded our state with pills that they knew far exceeded legitimate medical needs," DeWine says.

The suit names McKesson, AmerisourceBergen, and two Ohio-based companies, Miami-Luken in Springboro and Cardinal Health in Dublin. Ohio was already suing five painkiller manufacturers. Distributors have said they only responded to demand for medicine, and point the blame back on federal drug regulators and doctors.

Karen is a lifelong Ohioan who has served as news director at WCBE-FM, assignment editor/overnight anchor at WBNS-TV, and afternoon drive anchor/assignment editor in WTAM-AM in Cleveland. In addition to her daily reporting for Ohio’s public radio stations, she’s reported for NPR, the BBC, ABC Radio News and other news outlets. She hosts and produces the Statehouse News Bureau’s weekly TV show “The State of Ohio”, which airs on PBS stations statewide. She’s also a frequent guest on WOSU TV’s “Columbus on the Record”, a regular panelist on “The Sound of Ideas” on ideastream in Cleveland, appeared on the inaugural edition of “Face the State” on WBNS-TV and occasionally reports for “PBS Newshour”. She’s often called to moderate debates, including the Columbus Metropolitan Club’s Issue 3/legal marijuana debate and its pre-primary mayoral debate, and the City Club of Cleveland’s US Senate debate in 2012.