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    $26B settlement of opioid lawsuits to move ahead


    Four companies in the drug industry said Saturday that enough states had agreed to a settlement of lawsuits over the opioid crisis for them to move ahead with the $26 billion deal.

    An announcement from the three largest U.S. drug distribution companies and a confirmation from drugmaker Johnson & Johnson, which had previously announced that it would move ahead, came Saturday. That was the deadline for the companies to decide whether there was enough buy-in to continue the settlement plan.

    The distribution companies — AmerisourceBergen, Cardinal Health and McKesson — said that 42 states had agreed to join. Johnson & Johnson did not immediately say how many states agreed to its part of the settlement.

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