A federal judge in Ohio is considering whether to allow public access to government data detailing years of prescription opioid painkiller shipments.
The information is at the heart of lawsuits filed by hundreds of local governments against the companies that manufacture, distribute and sell the drugs.
The federal government agreed earlier this year to share the data with the governments in cases being overseen by Judge Dan Polster in U.S. District Court in Cleveland.
The agreement came with tight limits allowing only the plaintiffs to see the information, but journalists have made public records requests seeking it.
On Wednesday, the judge set deadlines for legal briefs on the issue.