HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — Attorney General George Jepsen announced Connecticut’s participation in a bipartisan coalition of attorneys general investigating pharmaceutical manufacturers.
The attorneys general are working to evaluate the lawfulness of the marketing and sales practiced by pharmaceutical manufacturers, specifically whether they have played a role in enhancing the nation’s opioid epidemic.
According to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner, 917 people in Connecticut died from drug overdoses in 2016 alone.
The opioid epidemic continues to have a devastating impact in Connecticut,” said Attorney General Jepsen. “Connecticut’s policymakers have taken important steps to address the epidemic, and our first responders are doing the truly difficult and critical work of addressing this day in and day out. As attorney general, it is my responsibility to take whatever action is within my authority to help address this crisis, which is why I have joined with my colleagues in announcing our bipartisan, multistate efforts today. It would be irresponsible to predict at this stage whether our efforts will lead to legal action or relief, but Connecticut residents can be assured that we will pursue this investigation fully.
Prescription and illicit opioids serve as the main concern in drug overdose cases nationally. In 2015, the number of deaths involved with opioids reached 33,091, a number quadruple the size reported in 1999, according to the Centers for Disease Control.
The attorneys general are not announcing potential targets at the moment due to the sensitivity of the investigation.