A meeting between the DEA and representatives of the prescription drug supply chain in the US was held Monday with the goal of discussing ways to minimize pharmaceutical diversion while maintaining access to medicines needed for the treatment of chronic pain.
The meeting was spearheaded by the DEA’s Acting Administrator, Chuck Rosenberg, and DEA’s Office of Diversion Control’s Chief, Lou Milione.
“The pharmaceutical industry has a vital role on the front lines of preventing drug misuse and abuse across America, as do we, and we plan to work closely with them,” said Acting Administrator Rosenberg in a statement. “Today’s forum helps us all to find the right balance between providing patients with important prescription medications and reducing the addictions, overdoses, and crimes that too often result from these substances falling into the wrong hands.”
“DEA is creating opportunities to interact with these companies about their roles and responsibilities under the Controlled Substances Act. A clear understanding of each other’s goals and challenges better equips both of us to fight our country’s prescription drug abuse epidemic,” said Deputy Assistant Administrator Milione.
During the meeting, DEA outlined federal laws and regulations that affect the prescription drug supply chain. Pharmaceutical representatives were provided the chance to ask questions and voice concerns about the regulatory environment and how the government making sweeping changes in how it views prescription opioids.
DEA highlighted in its press release the following data, which frames the government’s stance, “The abuse of controlled-substance medications is an epidemic in America today. 6.5 million people aged 12 and over abused these drugs in 2014, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s National Survey on Drug Use and Health. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in 2013 someone died of an unintentional drug overdose every 13 minutes, and more than half of those overdoses were attributed to these medications.”