RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Attorney General Jason Miyares has announced the final approval of the $26 billion opioid agreement between Cardinal, McKesson and Amerisource Bergen with Johnson & Johnson. The commonwealth expects to receive $530 million to fight the opioid crisis.
According to a release by the office of the Attorney General, following successful state sign-on and subdivision sign-on periods, the defendants will start releasing funds to a national administrator on April 2, 2022. Money will start flowing to state and local governments in the second quarter of 2022.
“The opioid crisis has devastated many Virginia communities, families, and lives. The Office of the Attorney General is dedicated to this fight and is proud to have played a role in this historic settlement, which every city and county in Virginia joined. Because of this, the Commonwealth expects to receive approximately $530 million dollars to fight back against the opioid epidemic and support efforts to reduce, prevent and treat opioid addiction,” said Attorney General Miyares.
Fifty-two states and territories have signed on to the agreement as well as thousands of local governments across the country. In Virginia, all 95 counties and all 38 independent cities have signed onto the agreement.
Virginia expects to receive approximately $530 million, according to the release. The funding helps to support efforts to reduce, prevent and treat opioid use disorder and to fight the opioid epidemic.
Per the release — In addition to the funds, Cardinal, McKesson, and AmerisourceBergen will:
- Establish a centralized independent clearinghouse to provide all three distributors and state regulators with aggregated data and analytics about where drugs are going and how often, eliminating blind spots in the current systems used by distributors.
- Use data-driven systems to detect suspicious opioid orders from customer pharmacies.
- Terminate customer pharmacies’ ability to receive shipments, and report those companies to state regulators, when they show certain signs of diversion.
- Prohibit shipping of and report suspicious opioid orders.
- Prohibit sales staff from influencing decisions related to identifying suspicious opioid orders.
- Require senior corporate officials to engage in regular oversight of anti-diversion efforts.
Johnson & Johnson is required to:
- Stop selling opioids.
- Not fund or provide grants to third parties for promoting opioids.
- Not lobby on activities related to opioids.
- Share clinical trial data under the Yale University Open Data Access Project.