Five major opioid manufacturers paid a combined $9 million over five years to groups that deemphasized the dangerous risks of opioid prescription, according to a new report released Monday by the ranking minority member’s office of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs committee.

The manufacturers—Purdue Pharma L.P.; Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc.; Mylan N.V.; Depomed, Inc.; and Insys Therapeutics, Inc.—paid an additional $1.6 million between 2013 and 2017 to individuals, including licensed physicians, affiliated with the advocacy groups, totaling more than $10 million in payments from 2012 onwards.

The groups receiving funding from the pharmaceutical giants are primarily professional societies and patient advocacy groups, which purport to represent the interests of pain doctors and the pain-afflicted. These groups, the report notes, “have issued guidelines and policies minimizing the risk of opioid addiction and promoting opioids for chronic pain, lobbied to change laws directed at curbing opioid use, and argued against accountability for physicians and industry executives responsible for overprescription and misbranding.”

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