In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, the opioid epidemic continues, with the American Medical Association reporting an increase in opioid-related deaths. Since 2017, Mercy Investment Services and fellow members of the Investors for Opioid and Pharmaceutical Accountability have engaged opioid manufacturers, distributors and retailers to strengthen their oversight of opioids.
Recently, as part of the Investors for Opioid and Pharmaceutical Accountability, Mercy Investment Services was involved in a campaign requesting that all investors in pharmaceutical distributor Cardinal Health consider voting against the annual executive compensation proposal, which shareholders believe did not hold the CEO accountable for the company’s role in the opioid crisis. The company recently agreed to a $5.6 billion legal settlement related to opioid lawsuits filed by state and municipal governments, yet still awarded a significant bonus to Cardinal Health’s CEO. At the annual meeting this month, almost 39 percent of Cardinal Health’s shareholders voted against the executive compensation proposal. Mercy Investment Services will continue to advocate for companies and their executives to take responsibility for their role in the opioid epidemic.