People in New Mexico rely on their physicians to prescribe safe medication that will help heal an injury or illness. Many treatments include the treatment of pain. Opioid medications, such as Oxycontin, have been used in the treatment of pain since it was introduced in the 1990s. It is believed by some to be a contributing cause to the ongoing opioid addiction crisis that has taken thousands of lives. The first major products liability trial based on claims of responsibility for the opioid crisis is scheduled to begin soon in another state.
The trial involves three major pharmaceutical companies and their subsidiaries. Purdue is one of the major companies involved. The companies recently moved to have the trial delayed, claiming that the state was not turning over materials to the plaintiffs in a timely manner. The judge denied the request for a delay because the two sides reportedly agreed to turn over materials in an ongoing manner as preparation continued and the attorneys for the state acknowledged that this is happening.
The state in this particular case is looking for damages in excess of $1 billion to help cover the cost of dealing with the drug crisis that the plaintiffs say the pharmaceutical companies helped to create. There are approximately 1,600 similar cases pending in other communities around the country. The outcome of this case, by trial or a settlement, may serve as a bellwether for those cases.
Medication is meant to be beneficial. When a medication properly prescribed and administered causes harm, a products liability case may be an option. Those in New Mexico who have been harmed in some way by a properly administered product may benefit by a consultation with a knowledgeable attorney. A lawyer can review the facts of the case and advise the client as to what legal options may be available.