February 14, 2020 / 3:26 PM / 11 days ago

21 states reject $18 bln offer from U.S. distributors to settle opioid lawsuits - WSJ

Feb 14 (Reuters) - Twenty one states reject an $18 billion settlement offer from three major drug distributors to resolve litigation over their alleged role in the opioid crisis, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday, citing a letter sent to the companies’ law firms earlier this week.

The dissenting states want the companies - AmeriSourceBergen Corp, McKesson Corp and Cardinal Health Inc - to pay between $22 billion and $32 billion, WSJ reported on.wsj.com/37kSRkA, citing a person familiar with a matter.

McKesson is focused on finalizing a global settlement structure that would provide billions of dollars in immediate funding and relief to states and local communities, a company spokesman said in an emailed statement.

“We are committed to being part of the solution, but are also prepared to defend ourselves vigorously if the litigation progresses,” he added.

AmeriSourceBergen and Cardinal Health did not immediately respond to Reuters’ request for comment

Reporting by Saumya Sibi Joseph in Bengaluru; Editing by Shinjini Ganguli

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