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Pharmaceutical Companies and PBMs Helped to Create Our Opioid Crisis

I have blogged previously about the role of PBMs in shipping drugs to retail drug stores that placed suspiciously high drug orders (see:Drug Distributor McKesson Pays Record Penalty For Suspicious Opioid Orders). The role of the Sackler family, owners ofPurdue Pharma, in aggressively pushing Oxycontin is also now coming to light (see:The Sackler Family: best known for philanthropy, they made billions promoting Oxycontin;Report: Stamford company confirms DOJ probe). Let's face facts. You can't have a country-wide epidemic of prescription drugs without the connivance of some of the major corporations. Some of these executives need to spend some time in jail for the harm that they have done to the country. Some of this is already happening as described in a recent article (see:Founder and Owner of Pharmaceutical Company Insys Arrested and Charged with Racketeering). Below is an excerpt from it:The founder and majority owner ofInsys Therapeutics...., was arrested...and charged with leading a nationwide conspiracy to profit by using bribes and fraud to cause the illegal distribution of a Fentanyl spray intended for cancer patients experiencing breakthrough pain. John N. Kapoor, 74, of Phoenix, Ariz., a current member of the Board of Directors of Insys, was arrested ...in Arizona and charged with RICO conspiracy, as well as other felonies, including conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud and conspiracy to violate the Anti-Kickback Law....The superseding indictment......
Source: Lab Soft News - Category: Laboratory Medicine Authors: Tags: Healthcare Business Medical Ethics Pharmaceutical Industry Source Type: blogs

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The widespread U.S. opioid &overdose crisis is an ever-increasing tragic concern for everyone: writhing victims, family members being fain to see their relatives suffer or die, doctors prescribing opioid pain-killers what they thought before as safe, and regulators imposed to handle a tough situation. Addiction. It’s painful to even read about the skyrocketing numbers of people suffering, thus we decided to map how digital health could help tackle the opioid crisis. Why is it so difficult to deal with the opioid crisis? Once you become addicted, it sticks with you for a long time, if not for life, just as a ...
Source: The Medical Futurist - Category: Information Technology Authors: Tags: Bioethics Mobile Health Virtual Reality in Medicine AI artificial intelligence data data analytics drugs future gc3 Innovation opioid opioid crisis pharma technology wearables Source Type: blogs
In 2015, the opioid crisis was escalating to emergency-level proportions, claiming as many lives as car accidents. As the daughter of a longtime drug addict, the current burgeoning opioid epidemic managed to be both familiar and strange to me at the same time. My mother developed her addictions during the height of drug epidemics that occurred in New York City in the mid-1980s. The timeframe also marked the infancy of the AIDS crisis and the height of Reagan-era “Just Say No” programs. Back then, addiction was treated and viewed more as a crime than a disease, supposedly committed by scoundrels and misfits. The...
Source: Harvard Health Blog - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Addiction Behavioral Health Source Type: blogs
Abstract As the United States experiences an epidemic of prescription drug abuse, and guidelines on safe practices in prescribing opioids in chronic pain have subsequently emerged from professional organizations and governmental agencies, limited guidance exists for prescribers of opioids to treat pain in patients with cancer or terminal illness. Patients with active cancer or terminal illness often have pain and are frequently prescribed opioids and other controlled substances. Current studies suggest that patients with cancer have similar rates of risk for misuse, abuse, and addiction as the general public. More...
Source: Anesthesia and Analgesia - Category: Anesthesiology Authors: Tags: Anesth Analg Source Type: research
Dr. Brennan M. Spiegel and his research team at the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center have been experimenting with virtual reality (VR) for years. I had a fruitful and very exciting correspondence with him about moments of immersion, virtual pharmacies or how to travel to Iceland without leaving your hospital bed. Read on! VR is an area of endless possibilities VR has not just moved the imagination of science-fiction fans, but also clinical researchers and real life medical practitioners. As a doctor, you could assist in the OR without ever lifting a scalpel. If you are a medical student, you could study the human body more...
Source: The Medical Futurist - Category: Information Technology Authors: Tags: Virtual Reality in Medicine clinical practice future GC1 Healthcare Innovation technology VR Source Type: blogs
Medicaid programs are at the center of the opioid epidemic. Nearly 12 percent of adults covered by Medicaid have a substance use disorder, including opioid use disorder. Available data suggest that Medicaid beneficiaries are prescribed painkillers at higher rates than non-Medicaid patients and have a higher risk of overdose, from both prescription opioids and illegal versions including heroin and fentanyl. In addition to the human toll, abuse of opioids has significant financial effects. In 2010, Arizona Medicaid paid for more than half of all opioid-related emergency department admissions, and in 2012, 81 percent of the $...
Source: Health Affairs Blog - Category: Health Management Authors: Tags: Costs and Spending Medicaid and CHIP Public Health opioid epidemic preferred drug lists prescription drug abuse prescription drug monitoring programs prior authorization requirements Section 1115 Waivers Source Type: blogs
Written By Myra ChristopherMy mom was a steel magnolia (i.e., southern and perfectly charming), but she had a steel rod up her back. After her first surgery for stomach cancer at age 53, she refused pain medication because she said that she “could take it.” She was young and strong and committed to “beating cancer.” After nearly two years of chemotherapy, radiation and two more surgeries, the cancer won. Eventually, I watched her beg nurses to give her “a shot” minutes before another was scheduled and be told they were sorry but she would have to wait. I could tell by the expressions on ...
Source: blog.bioethics.net - Category: Medical Ethics Authors: Tags: Health Care chronic pain Opioid addiction Opioid Epidemic Opioid prescriptions syndicated Source Type: blogs
  RX PAD With the death of the entertainer Prince attributed to a fentanyl overdose, and new FDA warnings, opioids have been making headlines. Since the most common reason patients visit the emergency department is for pain, it is not surprising that emergency physicians prescribe and administer medications such as oxycodone on a daily basis. Here are some of the basics about how oxycodone works, and also the reason why chronic users may be at even higher risk of unexpected respiratory depression. HOW IT WORKS: Oxycodone is a semi-synthetic opioid with analgesic properties. Oxycodone binds to mu, kappa, and delta opio...
Source: EPMonthly.com - Category: Emergency Medicine Authors: Tags: Uncategorized Source Type: news
The United States is struggling to deal with an opioid epidemic that is damaging lives, resulting in overdoses, and yet not reducing chronic pain. National initiatives are underway to dramatically reduce access to prescription opioids, but these efforts lack a systematic approach to provide alternative treatments for these patients. Policy changes are urgently needed to provide better care for patients with chronic pain, and in this post, we outline three feasible policy initiatives. Innovative reimbursement initiatives by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) could frame and stimulate use of evidence-based ...
Source: Health Affairs Blog - Category: Health Management Authors: Tags: Drugs and Medical Technology Health Professionals Public Health Quality chronic pain Opioid Addiction opioids Source Type: blogs
Pushed and pulled by many competing interests, doctors are ultimately and unfortunately an important gateway to opioid-based prescriptions – and their abuse. Although providing medication to patients they see is a key part of their job, at this point an opioid-based prescription to relieve pain could cause suffering through its abuse or ease the physical suffering of chronic pain; knowing the outcome isn’t always certain. Doctors will likely always be willing to provide prescription opioids to some of their patients, and that is appropriate, but as an epidemic of prescription opioid abuse rips across the count...
Source: Cliffside Malibu - Category: Addiction Authors: Tags: Richard Taite Source Type: blogs
Back pain is one of the most common ailments chronic pain patients face. For some, a neurosurgical approach can offer much relief and may be an alternative to long-term opioid therapy. Here ’s what one neurosurgeon and member of the AMA Task Force to Reduce Prescription Opioid Abuse had to say about treating patients with chronic pain and the Task Force’s efforts to end the opioid overdose epidemic.Treating chronic back pain in neurosurgery Jennifer Sweet, MD, is a neurosurgeon at University Hospitals Case Medical Center in Cleveland and the physician representative for the American Association of Neurological...
Source: AMA Wire - Category: Journals (General) Authors: Source Type: news
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