The opioid epidemic expands its reach every day while lawsuits against opioid manufacturers and distributors grow exponentially. By now, most of us are aware of the theory of liability of the pharmaceutical companies: misrepresentations about the advantages and risks of prescription opioids combined with an aggressive marketing scheme resulted in mass overprescribing and addiction. One offshoot of the opioid crisis is the urgent need for viable recovery solutions on the individual level. One of these solutions is medication-assisted treatment – fighting drugs with drugs ...
As America struggles to find solutions to the drug epidemic, our nation’s top law enforcement officer has focused his efforts on pursuing health care professionals involved in the improper prescribing of controlled substances and opioid-related health care fraud. U.S. Attorney General William Barr (and Jeff Sessions before him) has added dozens of prosecutors to support the initiative and this has led to an uptick in federal indictments. The FBI, DEA, FDA, HHS, IRS and U.S. Postal Inspectors are also involved in this effort to aggressively investigate and prosecute physicians ...
With the Department of Justice placing increased scrutiny upon the prescribing practices of physicians, it’s important to understand the burden federal prosecutors face when bringing these cases. My time as United States Attorney taught me that cases against medical professionals are brought only after a tremendous amount of time has been spent reviewing medical records, interviewing witnesses, analyzing billing data and, oftentimes, conducting undercover operations. These cases are especially challenging for a prosecutor because a doctor has a license to prescribe ...