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48.3 miillion dollars buys a whole lot of margaritas: Canada takes on Purdue

Canada reported 4,00o fatal opiate overdoses last year and movement is underway to seek settlement from companies who not only under-reported the addictive effects of opiods, but also promoted their product to physicians through "perks" such as lavish vacations. According to Andrea Woo of  The Globe and Mail (Vancouver):
"Ten of Canada’s largest pharmaceutical companies have voluntarily disclosed that they spent at least $48.3-million collectively on payments to physicians and health-care organizations in 2016, but critics say the figures are incomplete and fall well short of genuine transparency."

$48.3 million?  Even if it is under-reported, it sure sounds like a whole lot of wining and dining and fancy hotel rooms to me.
  
Perdue Pharma LD has already paid out hundreds of millions of dollars in civil and criminal proceedings in the US in settlements related to their misleading information regarding OxyConton.  Although Perdue has not made a submission of guilt in Canada, officials are seeking similar payment.

I wholly support the idea that pharmaceutical companies need to "fess up and pay up".  But what about those doctors lounging by the pool and sipping their margaritas?  Didn't it occur to them to look into the matter a little further?  If OxyContin and other painkillers were such superior drugs, why the special emphasis to get doctors on board?  Wasn't anyone just a little suspicious?

Which leads to the next question:  Once it became evident that opiods were addictive, why did they continue to be prescribed in such voluminous quantities?
When it comes to casting the blame for the opiate crisis, the think the net needs to be cast a little wider.  Physicians are highly educated professionals, not na├»ve dolts.
Someone should have blown the whistle on opiates a lot sooner.




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