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Judge Blocks Mass. Ban on Painkiller


BOSTON (AP) — A federal judge has blocked Massachusetts from banning the powerful new painkiller Zohydro.

U.S. District Court Judge Rya Zobel on Tuesday issued the preliminary injunction after the maker of the drug, Zogenix, said in a lawsuit that the ban ordered by Gov. Deval Patrick was unconstitutional.

Zobel said in issuing the injunction that Massachusetts appears to have overstepped its authority in banning the drug, which had been approved by the federal Food and Drug Administration, and that Zogenix was likely to succeed in its lawsuit.

Patrick ordered the ban after declaring a public health emergency in light of widespread prescription drug abuse in the state.

Secretary of Health and Human Services John Polanowicz (Poh-la-noh-witz) said the administration would review the judges’ ruling and likely have comment later in the day.

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