What actions has the FDA taken to stop opioid addiction where if often starts: with prescription pain medicine? In June 2017, the FDA requested for the first time that a prescription opioid be taken off the market. They said they were concerned with its benefits compared to its potential risks. Said FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, M.D. “We will continue to take regulatory steps when we see situations where an opioid product’s risks outweigh its benefits, not only for its intended patient population but also in regard to its potential for misuse and abuse.”
The drug, Opana ER, was being abused by addicts in forms it was never intended to be used in. Also, injecting it was causing other connected health problems, such as HIV transmission and blood diseases.
In the realm of correctional medical care, the signal that the FDA is taking the opioid crisis more seriously means a lot. So many inmates today are addicted to opiates or opioids. They are difficult to care for, and while our staff always do their best, they can be hamstrung often by those who see addiction as a criminal rather than medical issue.