Not All Drug Abuse Is From Health Providers and Oxycodone – Pain Medicine News – NOVEMBER 10, 2016 – By Peter J. Papadakos, MD, FCCM, FAARC
there has been an explosion of interest in the legislature to rein in oxycodone and to limit its use for pain management.
Health care providers are painted as the major culprits who are causing an explosion of drug abuse, as reported by the media.
Political debate has focused on how oxycodone and fentanyl are overprescribed, diverted and at the heart of our drug problem.
Public health care providers and politicians may not be aware of a more overwhelming supply chain of illicit addictive drugs.
I believe they are fully aware, but because it would be so very difficult to track down and stop this illicit supply, they have ignored the evidence.
Instead, they have made their case fit the popular (and wrong) narrative of prescription drug abuse and gone after people who can be easily tracked by the paperwork they are forced to fill out: doctors and patients.
These drugs that are flooding our streets are being manufactured not in a debilitated trailer in rural America, but in a factory at an industrial level.
It’s as easy as typing “Research Chemicals” into Google. Some sites offer free samples, bargain prices and home delivery by Express Mail. No need to doctor-shop or use criminal drug dealers.
Since 2008, the number of new psychoactive substances added to the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime has soared more than eightfold to 541, far more than the 244 drugs listed as controlled substances that are sold on these websites as “legal highs,” “research chemicals,” “not for human use” and fertilizers.
These chemical companies may be responsible for the explosion in narcotic overdose deaths that have affected all social classes across the country.
The media is filled with reports of fentanyl deaths and ever-increasing drug-related deaths. However, much of the problem may be due to the widespread availability of industrially produced fentanyl analogs.
The Drug Enforcement Administration is working to classify these specific analogs. An example of the frustration that law enforcement must deal with is a compound called furanylfentanyl. Once it is listed as illegal, the laboratories in China will be automatically changing the formula to come up with the next analog acetyl fentanyl drug configuration.
Our national government should address this problem with authorities in China. At the grassroots level, health care providers must educate the public on these dangerous, synthetic drugs.