Breaking Compliance News Blog

The Opioid Reckoning Has Just Begun

Posted by Margaret Scavotto, JD, CHC on 11/12/20 10:30 AM


Every few days, we see criminal charges brought against physicians and other individuals who provided controlled substances without a medical need; without a proper medical visit or exam; or in exchange for kickbacks or bribes.

On October 21, we had big news from the Department of Justice: settlements with Purdue Pharmacy and the Sackler family. Purdue Pharma, a pharmaceutical company primarily owned by the Sackler family, is most well-known for its opioid product OxyContin.

State, private, and federal lawsuits have increasingly been filed against opioid manufacturers, and many in the healthcare industry expected to see enforcement involving Purdue and the Sacklers. Here’s what happened in October:

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Topics: Penalties and Enforcement, Opioids, compliance

Why Compliance Should Care About the War on Opioids

Posted by Margaret Scavotto & Scott Gima on 6/18/19 8:51 AM

We have an opioid problem

In the United States, 134 opioid-related deaths occur daily. In 2016, more than 60,000 Americans died from drug overdoses, and two-thirds of those deaths were opioid related. Fentanyl is now responsible for more overdose deaths (28.8%) than heroin. And, three out of four new heroin users first misuse prescription opioids.

In 2017, almost one-third of Medicare Part D beneficiaries received opioids. About 460,000 beneficiaries received high amounts of opioids; 71,000 beneficiaries were at serious risk of misuse or overdose; and almost 300 prescribers had questionable prescribing. Everyone agrees our country has an opioid problem.

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Topics: Quality Assurance, Excluded Providers, Opioids, compliance

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