OxyContin Maker Files for Bankruptcy

Purdue Pharma, the company that makes the opioid painkiller OxyContin, has filed for bankruptcy, CNN reports.

The filing is part of the company’s plan to settle litigation involving more than 2,000 cases brought by states, counties, municipalities and Native American governments. The plaintiffs in those cases say Purdue Pharma fueled the opioid epidemic. Under the settlement, the company will provide more than $10 billion in funding to address the opioid crisis.

Purdue also plans to create a company called NewCo, which will produce medicines to reverse overdoses, and will continue to develop an over-the-counter version of naloxone at little to no cost to communities across the country, according to a company statement.

Full story at Partnership for Drug-Free Kids

Preference for fentanyl higher among young, white, frequent opioid users

A minority of people who use illicit opioids indicated a preference for fentanyl, the super-potent synthetic opioid that accounts for much of the recent rise in U.S. overdose deaths, according to a new study led by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

The study, based on surveys of 308 people who use opioids in Baltimore, Maryland; Boston, Massachusetts and Providence, Rhode Island, found that 27 percent indicated a preference for opioids containing fentanyl, and that people who prefer fentanyl are more likely to be younger, white, and daily users. The median age of those who prefer fentanyl was 38 years compared to 45 years for those who don’t prefer fentanyl. Fifty-nine percent of fentanyl preferers identified as non-Hispanic white, compared to only 29 percent among the non-preferers.

The study, published online in the journal Drug and Alcohol Independence, is thought to be the first to characterize fentanyl-preferring opioid users.

Full story at Science Daily

What is hoarding disorder?

Hoarding disorder is a condition that makes it difficult for people to throw things away, regardless of their value. There are a range of treatment options available.

Hoarding disorder can have a significant negative emotional, social, financial, and legal impact.

This article provides important information about hoarding disorder, including the symptoms, causes, and treatment options.

Symptoms

People with hoarding disorder may find it difficult or stressful to throw away items that others view as worthless or of little value.

Unlike collectors — who choose to collect a specific type of item — people with hoarding disorder tend to acquire various items. These may include piles of clothes, old magazines, food wrappers, and childhood trinkets.

Full story at Medical News Today

 

OxyContin Maker Purdue Pharma Agrees to Tentative Opioid Lawsuit Settlement

OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma has reached a tentative settlement worth billions of dollars to resolve thousands of lawsuits brought by state and local governments who sued the drug company for its role in the opioid epidemic.

At least 16 state attorneys general said they have not agreed to the deal, NBC News reports.

Under the proposed settlement, the Sackler family, which owns Purdue, would give up control of the company, which would declare bankruptcy. Future revenue from the sale of OxyContin would go into a trust designed to assist communities hard hit by the opioid crisis.

Full story at Partnership for Drug-Free Kids

Focus points to reduce opioid overdose deaths identified

A new study identifies specific locations where medication and harm reduction services for people with opioid use disorder should be available in order to have the greatest impact on reducing opioid overdose deaths. Led by researchers at Boston Medical Center’s Grayken Center for Addiction, the data show that more than half of those who died of an opioid overdose in Massachusetts encountered the health care, public health and/or criminal justice systems within the 12 months prior to their fatal overdose. These results, published in Drug and Alcohol Dependence, provide a roadmap to better reach these individuals at high risk of overdose and provide treatment and harm reduction services in order to reduce the number of overdose deaths.

For this retrospective cohort study, researchers set out to determine how and where individuals encounter the health care, criminal justice and public health systems in the 12 months prior to their fatal overdose. In collaboration with Massachusetts Department of Public Health, researchers examined eight data sets for persons over the age of 11 in Massachusetts between January and December 2014 with health insurance, as identified in the All-Payer Claims Database.

Full story at Science Daily