Gross Negligence, Public Nuisance and Misconduct
The plaintiff’s bar can be very creative when they initiate litigation. Many times their suits are dismissed over lack of specific knowledge or missing links between aggrieved parties and deep pocket defendants. But every now and then, huge verdicts are rendered when cases make it to a jury.
As reported in The LA Times, such might be the case of litigation initiated by the City of Everett, Washington, against Purdue Pharma, the manufacturer of OxyContin.
Essentially, the complaint argues that Purdue knew their product was being distributed to the city by black-market organized crime rings, and they turned a blind eye to this trafficking to “reap large and obscene profits.” The plaintiff will be arguing intentional, reckless and negligent misconduct, and that Purdue should pay for the cost to the community for widespread opioid addiction.
How long before it becomes routine to sue adjusters, payors, employers, and physicians for treating practices and prescription regimens that don’t follow the science? Are we, as an industry, facilitating damages and incurring liability when we ignore the medical evidence?
Scientific-based utilization and pharmaceutical reviews are the most effective ways to document and maintain best practices.
Be prepared to do better before the plaintiffs come for your deep pockets.