Contribute Try STAT+ Today

Members of the Sackler family, which controlled Purdue Pharma, used sales of the controversial OxyContin painkiller to “stretch” financial targets and pressured company executives to grow its market share for opioids by targeting high-volume prescribers and pushing higher-strength doses, according to documents released by a Congressional committee.

The trove of internal emails, slide decks, and financial charts help to reinforce previous impressions — gleaned from years of litigation — about the way the notorious drug maker was run by the secretive clan. The documents also note how members of the Sackler family treated one of its opioids as a “cash cow” and withdrew approximately $10 billion from Purdue coffers since 2008.

Unlock this article by subscribing to STAT+ and enjoy your first 30 days free!


What is it?

STAT+ is STAT's premium subscription service for in-depth biotech, pharma, policy, and life science coverage and analysis. Our award-winning team covers news on Wall Street, policy developments in Washington, early science breakthroughs and clinical trial results, and health care disruption in Silicon Valley and beyond.

What's included?

  • Daily reporting and analysis
  • The most comprehensive industry coverage from a powerhouse team of reporters
  • Subscriber-only newsletters
  • Daily newsletters to brief you on the most important industry news of the day
  • STAT+ Conversations
  • Weekly opportunities to engage with our reporters and leading industry experts in live video conversations
  • Exclusive industry events
  • Premium access to subscriber-only networking events around the country
  • The best reporters in the industry
  • The most trusted and well-connected newsroom in the health care industry
  • And much more
  • Exclusive interviews with industry leaders, profiles, and premium tools, like our CRISPR Trackr.