Attorney General Phil Weiser announces $3.1 billion nationwide opioid settlement with Walmart
Nov. 15, 2022 (DENVER)—Attorney General Phil Weiser today announced that he has reached a settlement with Walmart to resolve claims that the company contributed to the opioid addiction crisis by failing to appropriately oversee the dispensing of opioids at its stores.
The settlement will provide $3.1 billion nationally, with Colorado to receive more than $40 million to address the crisis. Moreover, it will require significant improvements in how Walmart’s pharmacies handle opioids. Attorneys general leading negotiations for the states, attorneys representing local governments, and Walmart have agreed to this settlement, and it is now being sent to other states for review and approval.
“We are continuing to hold accountable the companies that created and fueled the opioid crisis, which has devastated communities and harmed Coloradans throughout the state. As a result of our efforts, Walmart is committing to providing meaningful resources that will help people suffering from opioid addiction get the treatment and recovery services they need, and to change the way it operates so that this never happens again. This agreement with Walmart adds to the important progress we’ve already achieved through our settlements with the opioid manufacturers and distributors, and there is more work to do,” Weiser said.
The settlement will include:
- $3.1 billion to be divided by states that sign on, local governments, and tribes, which must be used to provide treatment and recovery services to people struggling with opioid use disorder.
- Broad, court-ordered requirements, including robust oversight to prevent fraudulent prescriptions and flag suspicious prescriptions.
The parties are optimistic that the settlement will gain support of the required 43 states by the end of 2022, allowing local governments to join the deal during the first quarter of 2023. All settlement funds Colorado receives will be distributed according to the same opioid framework agreed to by the State and Colorado’s local governments in August 2021. Colorado is slated to receive more than $520 in settlements with other opioid drug manufacturers and distribution companies.
Last month, states confirmed that promising negotiations were also underway with Walgreens and CVS. The parties continue their efforts to achieve those agreements.
Attorneys General from North Carolina, Nebraska, Pennsylvania, New York, Ohio, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Tennessee, and Texas have led the negotiations on this proposed framework.
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