By SARAH GRACE TAYLOR
Tennessee, in conjunction with a 41-state coalition against opioids, filed subpoenas with eight opioid manufacturers and distributors on Tuesday.
The coalition, which formed in June to combat the growing opioid crisis, is spearheaded by Tennessee State Attorney General Herbert Slatery.
According to the Attorney General’s Office, the group served Civil Investigative Demands — a kind of subpoena for documents — on Endo, Janssen, Teva/Cephalon, Allergan and their related entities, as well as a supplemental Civil Investigative Demand on Purdue Pharma Tuesday morning.
Similarly, the coalition sent information demand letters to opioid distributors AmerisourceBergen, Cardinal Health and McKesson requesting documents about their opioid distribution business.
“The opioid crisis impacts all of us, and is a threat to families in every community in Tennessee and across the country,” Slatery said. “We will use all resources available to identify and hold accountable those parties responsible. There is too much at stake not to attack this problem from all sides.”
In 2016, a record 1,631 Tennesseans died of drug overdoses according to the Tennessee Department of Health. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in 2016 Tennessee had the third-highest rate of opioid prescriptions in the country, behind only Alabama and Arkansas.