Feb. 2, 2024 – A subsidiary of the French advertising giant Publicis will pay 350 million dollars (or around 320 million euros) to the United States for its role in the opioid crisis in the country, New York Attorney General Letitia James  announced on Thursday, February 1 .New York State. This is the first advertising agency to reach an agreement with the courts for its role in the opioid crisis, Letitia James’ office said on her X account (formerly Twitter).

All states as well as several American territories will receive a share of the compensation set as part of an agreement with Publicis Health, according to the decision consulted by AFP. “For a decade, Publicis helped manufacturers like Purdue Pharma convince doctors to overprescribe opioidsnoted Letitia James, claiming that the advertising agency created flyers describing OxyContin as a treatment “safe and incapable of causing misuse”.

The Purdue laboratory produces the pain medication OxyContin, the overprescription of which is generally considered to be the trigger of the opioid crisis in the United States. According to data from the Centers for Disease Prevention and Control, more than 700,000 people died between 1999 and 2022 from an overdose linked to taking opiates, obtained on prescription or illegally.