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Project Tango: Big Pharma Makes the Poison and the Cure

Analysis by Dr. Joseph Mercola Fact Checked

big pharma project tango to profit from opioid addiction

Story at-a-glance -

  • Project Tango was the name given to Purdue Pharma’s business proposition to distribute addictive drugs and then swoop in with the treatment; a Massachusetts lawsuit alleges the Sackler family, who still own controlling interest in the company, developed the idea to drive profits
  • The lawsuit alleges that in 2017, Purdue management was concerned the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s effort to save lives by reducing opioid doses would force the company “to adjust down our revenue expectations”
  • Ignoring warnings by their sales reps, Purdue and the Sacklers continued to push sales of opioid drugs until a mounting number of lawsuits threatened their way of life; a recent lawsuit by New York City alleges the family then began illegally moving financial assets to protect their millions
  • Opioids are not proven effective for long-term pain management. If you suffer from chronic pain there are other nonaddictive options; if you have been on an opioid for several months, it is crucial to get help detoxing and finding another method of pain management

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, every day more than 130 people in the United States die after overdosing on opioids. In October 2017, the Manchester, New Hampshire, Fire Department reported it responds to more calls for drug overdoses than fires, and as of June 2017, opioids had become the leading cause of death among Americans under the age of 50.

Despite a number of public warnings, and a national effort to reduce this lethal trend, overdoses admitted into emergency rooms increased 30% between July 2016 and September 2017 in 45 states. 


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