“People are continuing to drop dead on the streets and it’s ludicrous for us not to do everything that we possibly can to make certain that we’re dealing with opioids in the safest way possible.”
~ Dr. Raeford E. Brown, M.D., Chair of the Food and Drug Administration’s Advisory Committee on Analgesics and Anesthetics
According to one of the chief advisors to the FDA, much of the blame for the ongoing opioid epidemic can be attributed to poor regulation by the FDA itself.
Dr. Brown, an anesthesia specialist, says that the FDA doesn’t do enough to supervise Big Pharma companies. What’s more, he doesn’t “think they have for a long time.”
Unsavory Business Practices
“The pharma industry was aware that the [pain management reform] movement existed and put enormous money behind the people pushing for it. What you had was an FDA that was told to get out of the way of the industry.”
~ David Herzberg, Associate Professor of History, State University of New York at Buffalo
Even after nearly 20 years of rising opioid fatalities, there are still problems with how new drugs are approved. For example, when the sufentanil derivative Dsuvia was up for approval, the manufacturer expected pushback from Dr. Brown. Dsuvia is 500 times stronger than morphine.
To put than in perspective, fentanyl, the “deadliest drug in America” is “only” 100 times more potent.
So to get around his objections, the company waited until Dr. Brown wasn’t available to weigh in. As he explains, “They waited until a time when I was going to be [away] and they had the meeting without me. It seemed to be calculated to gain approval of the drug by having people involved in the advisory committee system that had not been there in a while, and certainly that I wasn’t there.”
The drug was approved.
Even a quick look at the numbers shows how bad the opioid problem really is:
- Up to 29% of chronic pain patients who are prescribed opioids will misuse them.
- 8% to 12% will become dependent or addicted.
- An average of 130 Americans die because of opioid overdoses every day.
- The economic burden of opioid abuse is estimated at $78.5 billion
What Does This Mean to YOU?
Too many people think that just because a drug is prescribed that it is safe. Unfortunately, the last 20 years have shown us that is a dangerous misconception. Not only are these drugs potentially-deadly when abused, are also powerfully habit-forming even when they are taken exactly as prescribed.
This means that ANYONE can struggle with painkiller addiction…even YOU.
And if this is the case and you want to break free, Chapman House Treatment Centers, a premium drug rehab in Orange County, is your trusted local resource. To get the help you need, contact Chapman House TODAY.