Retail News Breaks
NACDS, health groups call for action on drug abuse, diversion
November 19th, 2012
ALEXANDRIA, Va. – The National Association of Chain Drug Stores has teamed up with pain care advocacy and other health organizations in calling on lawmakers to help address the problem of prescription drug diversion and abuse.
NACDS said Friday that it has sent a letter to the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee, Senate Judiciary Committee, House Committee on Judiciary and the House Energy and Commerce Committee to urge Congress to form a commission or advisory group to bring together all government agency stakeholders to address the problem.
"[We] are committed to partnering with law enforcement agencies, policymakers and others to work on viable strategies to solve the problems of prescription drug diversion and abuse," the letter stated. "Although numerous groups and state and federal entities are working to reduce these problems, success remains difficult to achieve. One challenge is that many of these groups and entities are not working in a coordinated manner.”
NACDS and the groups stressed the need to stem prescription drug abuse and diversion without negatively impacting legitimate patient access and care.
"While appropriate policies must empower law enforcement officials to act aggressively against individuals and entities actually engaging in diversion or abuse, diversion/abuse control actions must be balanced against the needs of health care providers to provide care to legitimate patients," they said in the letter. "We must ensure that legitimate patients receive critical medicines without interruption."
Pain care advocacy and health care organizations signing the letter included the American Academy of Pain Management (AAPM); American Society for Pain Management Nursing (ASPMN); Center for Practical Bioethics; Inflexxion Inc.; International Nurses Society on Addictions (IntNSA); National Association of Directors of Nursing Administration in Long Term Care (NADONA/LTC); National Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Association; Pain Treatment Topics; Purdue Pharma L.P.; U.S. Pain Foundation; and Virginia Cancer Pain Initiative Inc.
NACDS added that the groups are committed to ensuring patient access to medications they need to help manage their pain, ranging from a variety of health-related issues and diseases.
"Due to the urgent nature of the problems associated with prescription drug diversion and abuse," the letter said, "the advisory group's recommendations should be provided to Congress within one year of its creation or enactment."
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