An Insider from the Purdue Pharma Bankruptcy Speaks Out

from The New Yorker

One day last spring, Ryan Hampton had a secret meeting with David Sackler, whose family’s company, Purdue Pharma, stood accused of helping to precipitate the opioid crisis. Hampton was the co-chair of the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors (U.C.C.), a powerful group that represented thousands of people and entities with claims against Purdue in what was then an ongoing bankruptcy proceeding. His job was to act as a sort of watchdog, and he had access to a trove of sensitive material that Purdue and the Sacklers were compelled to turn over in discovery. Hampton was also in recovery from a devastating addiction to OxyContin and other opioids. He wanted to confront the family that had made billions of dollars from a drug that had caused so much suffering.

Initially, Hampton had demanded a face-to-face meeting with David’s father, Richard Sackler, one of the chief architects of OxyContin’s success. But, according to a new memoir, “Unsettled,” which Hampton will publish next month, he was told that Richard’s attorneys were worried that Richard and he would “end up killing each other by the end of the meeting.” Instead, David Sackler joined a Zoom meeting with Hampton and another member of the U.C.C., Kara Trainor. They had to agree in advance not to tell anyone about the meeting, lest word get out that a member of the Sackler family was liaising directly with an adversary during the bankruptcy proceedings.

At one point, Hampton writes, he asked, “Do you know anyone that’s struggled with opioids?”

“I don’t,” Sackler replied.

Hampton had often felt stigmatized as someone who struggled with addiction. Sackler informed him that he, too, knew what it felt like to be stigmatized—because of his family name.

“How do you think your family is going to be remembered?” Hampton asked.

“Frankly, I’m not concerned about that reputational side of things,” Sackler said.

More here.

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21 Comments

  1. In the article “an insider from the Purdue pharma bankruptcy speaks out”, the author, Patrick Radden Keefe discusses how a pharmaceutical company, known as Purdue Pharma has benefited from a dangerous drug that has caused millions of people to suffer. According to Justice.gov, Purdue Pharma has pleaded guilty to fraud and kickback conspiracies. The drug in question would be OxyContin along with other opioids. Purdue had also admitted that It marketed and sold its dangerous opioid products to healthcare providers, even though it had reason to believe those providers were diverting them to abusers. This is a serious deal because, due to Purdue’s neglect, hundreds of thousands of people have been affected by Purdue’s poor decisions.
    As the author implies, the whole situation seems fixed from the beginning. The reason why I feel this way is because Ryan Hampton is part of the U.C.C. which is a group that represented thousands of people and entities with claims against Purdue in the Bankruptcy proceeding. With that being said, Ryan Hampton and David Sackler had been under the accusation of conducting a secret meeting during the bankruptcy proceedings. Given the extent of the accusations against the Sackler’s, I find it interesting how Ryan Hampton is secretly meeting with the distributor of a drug with which he fell into an addiction. It’s also important to note that Hampton feels that the Sackler family should “rot in jail”.
    I am caught in the middle when it comes to who bears responsibility for the opioid crisis in the US. On one hand, I believe that Purdue Pharma should bear no responsibility for the actions committed amongst its consumers. As Sackler stated, “the people that become addicted to drugs of their own free will, and that the company should not be held responsible for the rash decisions of others.” Even though opioids can be seen as an addictive substance, I feel that Sacklers argument holds true. On the other hand, I feel that Purdue Pharma should bear some responsibility for the crisis because they are the direct manufacturer of the drug, along with that, many have people have died as a result of overdosing on a drug in which they produce.
    As a result, of the dispute, the Sackler family had been ordered to give up their “interest in Purdue and to pay a sum of four and a half billion dollars over roughly the next decade to fund additional treatments and other solutions to the opioid epidemic”. I feel that this settlement is perfect due to the extent of the case. As a result of the Sackler family’s decisions, people across the US have been affected by opioids, with that being said I feel that the Sackler family should be responsible for helping people recover from addictions via rehabilitation.
    After Purdue filed for bankruptcy, they notified the public, that people who have been affected by their products are entitled to make a claim against the company. This directly relates to what I am learning about in my class at the moment. Currently, we have discussed the topic of class action lawsuits. In this case, the large group of people who are filing the claim would be the people who have been affected by Purdue Pharma’s negligence, and the defendant would be Purdue Pharma.
    Overall, I found this case to be very interesting due to the extent of the alleged crime that had been committed by Purdue Pharma.

    Sources:
    “Opioid Manufacturer Purdue Pharma Pleads Guilty to Fraud and Kickback Conspiracies.” The United States Department of Justice. 24 Nov. 2020. Web. 27 Sept. 2021.
    Keefe, Patrick Radden. “An Insider from the Purdue Pharma Bankruptcy Speaks Out.” The New Yorker. 20 Sept. 2021. Web. 27 Sept. 2021.

  2. Purdue Pharma is a company that “develops, manufactures and market medications and other health related products to meet the needs of their customers.” Recently, they have been under a large amount of heat because they have filed for bankruptcy, back in 2019, to help control the direction of the many civil charges that were being brought up against them. From the textbook reading this week we know that these are noncriminal disputes and bankruptcy is under a variety of business litigations. This was brought to greater light when Ryan Hampton someone who was directed impacted by opioids, that Purdue supplied, wanted to have a secret meeting with David Sackler about how they are helping to cause the opioid crisis. After these allegations got greater, Purdue decided to file for bankruptcy so they can choose where they file and handpick a judge to get favorable results.

    Due to this filing, the Sackler family has decided to remove themselves from Purdue and focus on supporting the opioid crisis. One of the first pages when you visit their website is called ‘restructure’, which refers to the steps they are going to take the first one is “to deliver billions of dollars across the country to support programs with the opioid crisis.” In this section they also have some highlights of what this restructuring will include, besides the monetary donation. Some other main highlights included are “the company will go under new ownership, the National Opioid Abatement Trust and the new owners will ensure that everything is at the highest standard in terms of conduct and ethics/morals.”

    While the work to bring back Purdue is happening, as stated above, this is not an ideal route for companies to addresses the harm and corporate misconduct. While the Sackler family is donating money to help the opioid programs they do not seem to have the viewpoint that what they did was wrong. In the article it stated that Sackler and Purdue, when Sackler owned it, believed that people become addicted by free will and that a company should not be held responsible for it. While their may be a case to this, business’ and their general counsel need to navigate these waters to ensure something like this does not happen again for both the customers and the company. I think it was wise of the Sackler family to cut ties with the Purdue brand and I am curious to see the outcomes of the events.

  3. Purdue Pharma is a family-owned pharmaceutical company that was run by the Sackler family. This company was a major producer of the harmful and addictive drug Oxycontin. The company filed for bankruptcy in 2019 because it was attacked for its role in the widespread addiction to opioids. An interview between Ryan Hampton, a victim of opioid addiction, and David Sackler, a member of the family that owned the pharmaceutical giant, took place. This interview was covered in an article called “An Insider From The Purdue Pharma Bankruptcy Speaks Out” by Patrick Radden Keefe. The article discusses why Purdue Pharma filed for bankruptcy and the advantages they had because of this option such as picking their own judge. The billionaire voices his own opinion, which shocked Hampton because of Sackler’s nonchalant responses.
    In the interview, David Sackler is asked if he knows anyone who is addicted to the opioids that are produced by his company to which he replies with “I don’t.” Hampton has suffered from the vices of addiction after he was prescribed opioids because of an accident he had. In the article, Keefe writes about a 2020 deposition that Richard Sackler, David’s father, was involved in. Sackler was asked if opioids can kill people. He replied, “Sometimes. I don’t think that the manufacturer was any more responsible than the manufacturer of a car that’s involved in a fatal accident.” He does not seem to care about the deadly effects of the drug his company produces. The main reason for the bankruptcy filing was to clear their family name and rid themselves of the burden from the Purdue Pharma company. In their court terms, it was said that they would pay billions of dollars to help fund drug addiction treatment, but they also would be protected from any legal trouble that involves the company. This was selfish and despite their donations, they still seemed to have no remorse for their actions.
    The Sackler family got off free in this case. They relished in the wealth that they earned through years of benefitting from opioid addiction. The judge, Robert Drain, allowed for this family to pay their way out of the damages that they causes society. The Sackler family will be plagued by their actions, but that does not seem to bother David Sackler who was asked how he thinks his family will be remembered, to which he replied, “Frankly, I’m not concerned about that reputational side of things.” This case was very interesting to investigate because of the loopholes that the Sackler family used to rid themselves of the Purdue Pharma company.

  4. The bankruptcy of Purdue Pharma is indeed a sticky situation. The company caused a lot of unfixable damage in many communities across the country and these irreparable offenses are just an example of the different ways large companies can maximize their income without paying any regard to the peripheral damage. So severe that a meeting couldn’t even be arranged to be in person between someone who was deeply affected by the drug business Purdue Pharma head and one of the members of the family that profit off of the company because I fear that they would “kill each other” before the end of the meeting. Purdue Pharma found its way around the consequences that would have came with everything that happened by reaching the settlement.
    The company agreed to pay an amount of money that honestly will be made back without much effort because of how much money the company brings in. So the question remains were they really held accountable? Or did they just escape from something that could have ended up in worse fashion for them? The reparations of such a large scale operation would have been much more severe if the case was to go a different route. Will the victims of this injustice ever be compensated for the things that they had to endure? It doesn’t look like it with the way that Purdue Pharma wiggled its way out of having to deal with some very severe consequences. Being that the company is family owned, the consequences that would have came of the case going to trial would have been much more than just a court decision. The family’s reputation would have taken a big hit. Sure, the family name is definitely tarnished but if this were to go to the extent that it could have it would have been a completely different story. This whole situation was essentially swept under the rug and put away in quite fashion and benefit of Purdue Pharma and the family which owns the company.

  5. I thought this article from start to finish was very interesting. First of all, I found it compelling how Hampton was seemingly confronting not only Purdue Pharma but the opioid epidemic in America since it was responsible for negatively altering the course of his life. However, despite how honorable that is, it is sad to see that despite fighting for those who lost their lives or have suffered from opioids, the bankruptcy of Purdue Pharma will continue to hurt those who are pursuing legal action against the company. The reason for this is that the company was granted immunity from civil cases by a judge because they are giving up stockholder’s equity of the company and pay billions of dollars to fund addiction treatments.
    I am conflicted about how to feel about this case because I think the argument that both parties are responsible for perpetuating the opioid epidemic in this country has real validity. As harsh as it sounds, people do take drugs by their own free-will and are not forced to by these companies. However, companies like Purdue Pharma, despite trying to run a successful operation, are perfectly fine with customers consuming large amounts of their products and often try to hide warnings about what could happen if one were to consume too much of their product.
    I also do not know how to feel about the punishment made to Purdue Pharma. I do not think this will have the positive effect it was intended to have and feel this could set a bad precedent for when companies similar to theirs unfortunately go bankrupt.
    One final thing I thought of after reading this case was the Packer Corporation vs. Utah case from 1932. When reading about a case such as the one in this article, it makes me understand why the state of Utah would not want advertisements that promote the use of cigarettes to be visible and abundant to everyone driving all over the state. Since so many adults and young people consumed tobacco based products back then, I respect that they wanted to limit the promotion that they received. It also makes me think of how this case was ahead of its time because back then, they did not know all of the harmful effects of cigarettes with cigarettes being regulated less as well.

  6. After reviewing the information that was presented to me in this article, regarding the final outcome of the long battle with Purdue Pharma, I definitely cannot say I am content, however, I am unfortunately not really surprised either. I wouldn’t blame the entire Sackler family for this mess though, I would specifically blame Richard Sackler, the father. He cultivated this entire company and its disgusting reputation, and continued to do so even after seeing certain family members and workers suffer tremendously with the addiction of his OxyContin drug. I usually understand the business perspective of most things, even when its not the most clean perspective, however, in this situation I really do not know how Sackler could even sleep at night, never mind maintain a business mindset. The fact that he is solely the root cause of an immense number of deaths and continues to find ways in which he could keep his operation active in the future absolutely blows my mind. His wife literally divorced him and her mother struggled with addiction to his drug and he still did not even seem to care. When someone that close to Sackler does not change his mindset, how does one expect anyone to? Hampton is in the right by continuously making an effort to expose Sackler, even after the case has been settled. I still do not understand how a judge that is commonly known for letting the “big guys” off easy is just excepted and essentially ignored. If this guy just did something bad that did not really affect anyone, I might be able to understand. However, when there is such a large amount of people that have died, a lot of those deaths being young lives, there is just no way you can be let off this easy. The four and half billion dollars this company is required to pay will not even come close to helping any of these families recover mentally or physically.

  7. I am not surprised that a big pharmaceutical company like Purdue Pharma wants to try to cover its tracks and not take responsibility for instigating an opioid epidemic; however, I do not think that the whole Sackler family should be held accountable for Purdue Pharma’s ethical and legal problems. I would say that Richard Sackler, founder of this corporation, handled the lawsuits and controversy around OxyContin very poorly. For example, a quote from the book “Unsettled” quoted Sackler saying, “I don’t think that the manufacturer was any more responsible than the manufacturer of a car that’s involved in a fatal accident” (McGregor 9). As the founder of a company that caused thousands of people to die from addiction, I find that extremely cold and heartless. Sackler is basically saying that it is people’s fault for getting addicted to OxyContin, that he does not care about the increasing number of deaths and addicts, and that he has no role in the rising opioid problem. Knowing all of this, Sackler still attempted to grow his company and keep distributing OxyContin. I can see both sides to this situation, as I recognize what the Sackler family is saying when people take drugs of their own free will and are not forced to take opioids to cure their pain; yet, Purdue Pharma saw that these people were consuming OxyContin in large amounts and kept giving these poor individuals more and more. Additionally, there were often no warnings to the consequences of consuming more opioids than prescribed by a medical professional. Thus, people kept dying or were lead down a path of addiction.
    It was definitely courageous of Hampton, the co-chair of the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors, to speak up upon the problem to the Sackler family, as he is representing thousands to millions of people who lost their lives, or whose lives were ruined due to addiction. Unfortunately, despite all of those people who are still attempting to gain some sort of compensation for the struggles they have faced, Purdue Pharma was given immunity by the judicial system. Purdue Pharma was granted immunity from future lawsuits because they declared bankruptcy and gave up their stock to pay for people’s addiction treatments. Overall, I feel as though this was an easy way out for Purdue Pharma and not a good example to other companies when caught in a similar situation as this. In my opinion, it is the government trying to save or maintain big businesses.

  8. I was born after the opioid crisis began sometime in the late 1990s. I was raised during one of the worst epidemics in U.S. history; however, I found many aspects of this article very interesting. I feel that having a good understanding of the opioid crisis is important to understand this article. The opioid crisis had devesting consequences. The use of opioids resulted in misuse and overdoses of hundreds of thousands of people, and misuse and addiction during pregnancy led to babies being born addicted to and reliant on these drugs. Things got worse in 2016 where opioids, 40% of which were prescription, were responsible for causing upwards of 42,000 deaths.
    The section regarding Richard Sackler’s response to whether or not OxyContin kills people amazed me. I believe that it is unfair to compare an overdose or addiction to that of a fatal car accident. There is a large difference between the scenarios. A manufacturer is oftentimes not responsible for a fatal car accident because there was nothing wrong with the car originally. Fatal car accidents are more often than not caused by irresponsible drivers. Those suffering from an addiction to a drug that Purdue Pharma and the Sackler family created are not all irresponsible. A large majority of these people have been prescribed this medication by healthcare professionals who were assured by the pharmaceutical companies, such as Purdue Pharma, that patients would not become addicted to the medication. Additionally, the 2017 email, that revealed Richard’s ex-wife’s mother was struggling with the side effects of the drug should have been more than enough to pull it from the shelves. The family themselves even admitted to questioning the use of the drug.
    Further, I believe that it is unfair that the company can choose where they would like to file bankruptcy. The company avoided liability for inciting an epidemic and when they finally caved in, they choose a state where they would be given a more lenient judge. Purdue Pharma and the Sacklers deserve to pay whatever the ultimate price maybe for all of the harm and despair that they have caused. They do not deserve the easy way out. Yes, they are paying out billions of dollars, but at the cost that they will never be held liable for the same charges again. That is not justice.
    Additionally, I do not think that it is fair that institutional players such as CVS should be able to claim a large majority of the money. These companies did not have to sell this drug, the same way the healthcare professionals did not need to prescribe it. I believe that healthcare professionals and pharmacies are just at fault as Purdue Pharma and the Sacklers.

  9. This article is a very emotional one, as I could not imagine how Ryan Hampton could have felt if he saw the man who was responsible for his opioid addiction and the downward spiral in his life in front of him. I also cannot imagine how angry he must have been to hear David Sackler say to him that he does not care for how he will be remembered after the damage Purdue Pharma has created, which is totally disrespectful to Ryan, as it is saying that the main focus of Purdue Pharma is to profit off of consumers, no matter if they get addicted to opioids or not. This article only reinforces my belief that the United States government does not do enough regulation when it comes to drug manufacturing and people as careless as David Sackler need to be held accountable for the tens of thousands of death that occur every year from victims of drug overdoses.

  10. The more and more I read on corporations and the issues surrounding American corporatism, the more I seem to loathe it. As far as small businesses go, I fully support the idea of creating and selling a product to the public. It can be a very difficult, yet redeeming career path, and I am impressed by all those who make it work. But when things like this arise, where a company has clearly done much more harm than good, I feel almost enraged. The fact that these billionaires and companies can be so cold in response to the potential thousands whose lives they have ruined or messed up is truly baffling. The worst part is that the bankruptcy court effectively gave them a free pass, removing just about any and all accountability that, under a more just system, they would have faced. So many of these rich individuals, it seems, care little about the lives that they harm, and the people they affect, To them, the profits they reap are much more important than one or thousand civilians harmed in the process. Their immunity to future civil cases might as well be an acquittal, as the money that they will be paying to support addiction programs will likely be misappropriated and pointless anyway. Even in the article we see how the lawyers of Purdue, and just about everyone else involved in the proceeding, were intentionally drawing out the length of the case to siphon as much money out of the “to be divvied up” assets as possible. As is the case in just about every one of these kinds of hearings, the rich and powerful come out on top, and the rest of us get screwed. I am truly thankful that my own family was never affected by the opioid crisis, and I hope that we can move towards a future where this baffling display of greed can be suppressed and eradicated at the source. For that though, American corporatism, as well as the very foundations of our systems, need to be reworked from the ground up. That sort of ordeal is massively unrealistic, and unfortunately, reaching a future where the US government and corporations actually work to support the people is highly unlikely.

  11. Bradley C Collot
    This article is a prime example of big pharma and how they have been for years. People don’t understand that many doctors want to also make a profit in the industry and would stop at nothing to get it. Just like in every profession there are people who are involved and join for the wrong reasons. From 1999 to 2019 nearly 500,000 people died from the opioid epidemic. Big Pharma has been the most detrimental factor during this period because they are the ones who are pumping out these pills knowing what they are doing to people. They are willing to sacrifice ithers if it means bringing them billions and billions of dollars every year. Big Pharma is like politics, you always know that there is something bad going on, but you just have to prove it. Accusations in this industry are met with fire, there is no going back once an accusation is made, the credibility of this industry is at its peak and it will not go down without a fight. The owners of these companies rarely if not ever know about people close to them suffering and addicted to the products they create. “Frankly, I’m not concerned about that reputational side of things,” Sackler said. David Sackler who’s family company is a huge producer in these products seems to have no conscience at all and doesn’t feel bad for anything that he has done. Another fact we must put into place is that many of these companies are trying to be a upstanding company but the reputation this industry has just makes it harder for them. Often times Doctors would prescribe medicine to people who don’t even need it, just to make a profit people would do the most unethical things known to man. These people went through years and years of school, licensed and trusted doctors to stab the people in the back they swore to protect. How ironic is it that the doctors who claim to have caring hearts are able to sign away somebodies life knowing the ultimate result. It is concerning because it is getting harder and harder to depict and recognize who is corrupt and who is not. In many times it is the nicest doctor who can be a murderer.

  12. Drug addiction has always been the focus of expression in American film and television dramas. Once exposed to opioids, it will be difficult to control this addiction. Purdue Pharmaceuticals is an American pharmaceutical company. The opioids manufactured by Purdue Pharmaceuticals are usually used for pain relief, but the OxyContin analgesics manufactured by Purdue Pharmaceuticals are highly addictive; therefore, Purdue Pharmaceuticals faces accusations of helping contribute to the opioid crisis and Facing a fine of 8.3 billion U.S. dollars. In 2019, Purdue Pharmaceuticals has filed for bankruptcy protection. In fact, there is nothing wrong with the medicine itself. Its soothing and analgesic effect is a boon for cancer patients, and it also reflects the progress and pioneering efforts of human medical research. It can only be said that the wrong person is the drug abuser.

  13. Reading this article reminded me that anything can be achieved in this country with the right amount of money and connections regardless of how corrupt these resources are. However, I do believe that it was very brave for this insider to actually speak out about what is actually going on inside of these big pharma companies. Big pharma profits obscene amounts of money every year, so I do not understand the evil of the family that owns Purdue Pharma to not acknowledge responsibility in the addictions, deaths, and ruined lives that they have caused. But also, these people have sustained where they are for a reason and will continue profiting off of their users’ addictions to drugs, they probably don’t even need until they are legally forced to stop. I believe that there will always be a clear trail of money from big pharma to the lobbyists who lobby the lawmakers in this country. I would love to see any elected official that we have in congress write up a bill to stop the abuse of Americans by the drugs sold by big pharma. It’s time that big pharma stops pleading ignorance to their abusive schemes. The people in the labs making these drugs had to earn a college degree in medicine and receive much practice in order to work their position at the companies. They are well aware of the drugs addicting effects and how they have the ability to ruin the lives of the people that take them. The people in their corporate offices have all been educated with college degrees to where they know that it is illegal and unethical. There is no excuse for Sackler to say something as cow manure as “I don’t think that the manufacturer was any more responsible than the manufacturer of a car that’s involved in a fatal accident.” The entire Pharma industry seems to be unraveled in a scheme of branding drugs as life changing and that they need to be taken when a lot of times patients do not even need them. They are then sold to get the users addicted to a drug they never needed in the first place. This is a twisted loophole, a form of money laundering, and our American lawmakers need to come together regardless of political affiliation, and put an end to these big pharma drug epidemics.

  14. Cases like this one keep showing that the world needs ethical education. However, unfortunately, people making money out of other people’s suffering is becoming an everyday thing in today’s world. “I do not think that the manufacturer was any more responsible than the manufacturer of a car that’s involved in a fatal accident.” So said Richard Sackler; this shows his lack of ethics. Nevertheless, that is why good car manufacturers work every day in the security of their clients and why not every person can drive a car. Car manufacturers are not going for the cheapest materials anymore, and they are going for the safest. He is not trying to make his products any safer. He only wants money. When people like Sackler use the Napoleonic philosophy, “the end justifies the means.” The world is in danger; a person managing one of the biggest pharmaceutical companies must be ethical. People’s lives and health depend on his products.
    Although I am afraid I have to disagree with the case’s outcome, I am not surprised. I believe that $4.5 billion is not enough. The judicial system has to understand that money does help, but it is not enough. Actions must be done.

  15. This article “An Insider from The Purdue Pharma Bankruptcy Speaks Out” written by Patrick Radden Keefe, was a very interesting read for me as I am not too informed about the whole opioid epidemic. The first thought that came into my head after reading was how much unfixable damage this company caused the U.S. consumer. It is kind of crazy that an insider would speak out about a big pharma company letting the world get a little insight into how things are handled. I believe the whole situation was handled very poorly between Richard Sackler and the consumers that were taking the drugs and the families he destroyed in the process of making millions. I do not think the entire Sackler family should be held responsible as they were not the creators of the drug, they just share the same name as the founder of the corporation. There is part of me that thinks Purdue Pharma and Sackler are not responsible for what they caused in this opioid epidemic. Keefe pointed out Sackler said, “the people that become addicted to drugs of their own free will, and that the company should not be held responsible for the rash decisions of others.” Even though opioids are an addictive substance doctors and consumers should be better informed of that, so they do not become addictive. There should have been laws set in stone to prevent that from happening. On the other side of this, I think Purdue Pharma should be held responsible as it was their drug killing thousands and hurting so many that it cannot be traced to another manufacturer.
    At the end of the day the Sackler family is responsible for one of the biggest epidemics in the U.S. to date. I feel as if the punishment they were given was a fair punishment paying close to four and a half billion dollars to help others that have fallen in the hole of opioids in the U.S. today. To make an even bigger impact in America they should create rehabilitation centers across each state and to donate money to research so there can finally be a drug in the world that is not addictive. This can also serve as a learning lesson to consumers, doctors, and lawmakers when dealing with drugs that can be addictive. First consumers should inform themselves to know how much of a drug they can take as well as how long. For doctors they should not prescribe patients with just any drug because they “need it” to get over the pain. Finally I feel like lawmakers should put a limit to the amount you are allowed to buy or get prescribed a month from doctors so they are not easily accessible or an excess amount for people to become addicted to a certain drug.

  16. Reading this article shows us how big named corporate companies are sometimes immune to true punishment for their crimes. The Purdue Pharma family were responsible for the beginning of a devastating addiction for many people. Ethically and morally, the family are in the wrong because they have caused harm to so many people and they are not able to fix it. Its not easy to make someone overcome addiction, and they caused such a mass problem that it could be considered an epidemic. The Sackler family unfortunately does not care about the damages they have committed. Whats most important to them is being able to keep their company and staying wealthy. They have won multiple suits against them because of their connections and position in society. After their recent case, they were given a punishment involving no jail time, only a fine. I do not believe this is enough of a punishment because they only lost some money, which they can make back. They already have enough money so to me when they were given the fine, they probably viewed it as getting off the hook. Personally, I thinks this is an ethics case, and because of the damages they caused to people and their families, they should have some time behind bars. Even after this punishment, I still don’t think the Sackler Family will care, but it will make them try and be more careful I would think. Something that I found interesting was that when an Opioid addict named Ryan Hampton asked a Sackler family member how he thought his family would be remembered, he said that he did not care about that. This shows that they ignorant because of all the times they were let off easy, and this is why I believe the fine, and even the bankruptcy is not a sufficient punishment.

  17. I found this article to be very informative as well as intriguing. As a background, this article is written in reference to the opioid epidemic and how big Pharma were properly blamed for this issue. This was such an unfortunate event that occurred. However there is a lot that we can take away from this event. We got to learn that doctors are human and like getting paid. It is unfortunate but true that people will put themselves in front of you or the customer. In this article, we get to see a specific case as to how this opioid epidemic affected someone and how it is going now. It is upsetting to know that anything can be done with the right people to back you up, the right resources, and enough money. It doesn’t matter what the cause is whether good or bad, it will go through with the right resources. Purdue pharmaceuticals produced many different products/drugs including Oxycoitn. The Oxycontin produced by Purdue Pharmaceuticals proved to be highly addictive and now they owe 4.5 billion dollars and are now bankrupt. Ryan Hampton is great for coming forward about the faults of Purdue Pharmaceuticals. Purdue argues that they are like a car manufacturer being held responsible for accidents. I believe that this is just not the case in that they know their drug is heavily addictive and yet still sell it. I understand that the people consuming the drugs are making the choice themselves. No one is forcing them and it is their own free will. At some point though, you need to bring in the matter of business ethics and know that what Purdue Pharmaceuticals did was wrong. I am glad that the whistle blower came forth and expressed all of the unethical and corrupt things that this company did. By even expressing his own faults you can tell that he was genuine and actually cared. Ultimately I understand both sides to the story but I have to take the side of the claimant and feel the Purdue Pharma company should be held accountable for their actions as well as paying for programs which fight opioid addiction. This article was very intriguing and definitely brought some new information to me on how the whole Pharma industry works compared to how we think it should work. I like how the legal aspect was tied into the article and am glad I read it.

  18. This article dives into the story of Purdue Pharma going bankrupt. In the article, it states that there was a secret meeting held between Ryan Hampton and David Sackler. Hampton was on the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors, and essentially was a representative for thousands of people who had claims against Purdue Pharma. Sackler was a member of the family who owned Pharma. The meeting they had was to discuss Purdue Pharma’s involvement in aiding the opioid crisis, as well as their financial status. Hampton, a former addict himself, brought up the fact that many people overdose from the drugs Pharma produces, which was a reason for them being sued so much. Later in the article, Hampton’s previous attempts to crack down on Purdue Pharma were stated, and it is appearent that there is shady business going on, yet it seemed impossible to properly repremend the company for this. In the end, Purdue Pharma was eventually caught and the company dissolved. Personally, I have a few gripes with Purdue Pharma. One, the company was so ignorant to the fact that the OxyCotin they produced was getting people addicted at an alarming rate. The thing that bothered me even more in this article as the fact that big name companies that sold Purdue Pharma’s products would try to keep the company from dispanding. The final gripe I have is with the fact the Pharma was looking to minimize their reprucussions by setting up jurisdiction is a county known for letting companies off easy. These things really give Purdue Pharma a bad rep and the fact that they now have to pay $4.5 bilion to settle the opioid claims is fitting.

  19. An article from The New Yorker, “An Inside From the Purdue Pharma Bankruptcy Speaks Out,” brings some frightening information to light. David Sackler, whose family owns Purdue pharma, was accused of helping to precipitate the opioid crisis of 2019. Ryan Hampton was the co-chair of the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors (U.C.C.), a powerful group representing thousands of people with claims against Purdue Pharma who was in an ongoing bankruptcy proceeding at the time. Purdue had filed for bankruptcy in the midst of all these lawsuits being filed against them so they can choose a judge that would rule in their favor. Hampton was in recovery of struggling with an addiction to OxyContin and other opioids and wanted to confront the Sacklers who’ve made “billions of dollars from a drug that caused so much suffering.”
    In a secret meeting between Sackler, Hampton, and another member of the U.C.C., the two men discussed the negative impacts that the drug has had on many families. In the memoir published by Hampton, “Unsettled,” he quotes Richard Sackler, David’s dad. Richard did not feel the slightest bit of responsibility when asked if OxyContin kills people. He simply stated, “I don’t think that the manufacturer was any more responsible than the manufacturer of a car that’s involved in a fatal accident.” But the community of people who have been negatively affected by opioid addiction spreads much broader than the people whose lives it has taken.
    Purdue had been sued by almost every state in the United States and by a plethora of other plaintiffs. For many years, Purdue and the Sacklers had argued that people become addicted to drugs through their own decisions and free-will and that the company and the family that owned it should not be held responsible for the decisions of others.
    “According to Hampton in his book, David ‘struggled with issues related to excessive gambling and alcohol.’ It is remarkable to consider that a family that has shown such callousness to others who struggle with addiction might have had some acquaintance with addiction issues itself.”
    “… the central target of Hampton’s book is the bankruptcy process. ‘Bankruptcy, at its core, wasn’t about right and wrong,’ he writes. ‘It was a corporate autopsy, performed by a group, according to a set of rules that looked at facts and figures and rarely considered morality.’”

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