Sentry BioPharma Services attended the Controlled Substance Distributor Conference, hosted by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Office of Diversion Control, in Indianapolis, Indiana on May 10 – 11, 2016. The topics presented include prescription drug and chemical trends, ARCOS/record keeping, drug disposal and effective controls against drug diversion.
Jennifer Marcum, Sentry’s CEO, says, “Overall, the controlled substance distributors’ conference was informative with much emphasis being placed on the addiction epidemic, controlled substance trends and the emergence of illegal pain management clinics.” Ms. Marcum continued, “The DEA is very clear about compliance with 21 CFR 1306.04(a). The DEA wants to enable practitioners to issue prescriptions for legitimate medical purposes. The DEA expects all members of the pharmaceutical supply chain to manufacture according to GMPs, to tightly control inventory and to maintain accurate records.”
James A. Arnold, Acting Chief Liaison & Policy Section, addressed the opioid prescription problem, the public health epidemic and the impact on society.
Between 2000 and 2014, there has been a 137% increase in unintentional deaths due to a prescription overdose. 28,647 deaths involved an opioid in 2014. The number of deaths per year exceeds that of motor vehicle accidents. Opioid addiction and abuse is a very serious situation in the U.S. Heroin, an illegal highly addictive analgesic drug derived from morphine, usage and death rates skyrocketed in 2015. However, heroin is only part of the problem. More and more people are getting hooked on prescription painkillers, laced illicit drugs and lethal drug cocktails like the “Holy Trinity” consisting of hydrocodone, carisoprodol and alprazolam. Heroin mixed with fentanyl creates a deadly drug combo that is 100 times more potent than morphine. Just one-fourth of 1 mg of fentanyl is enough to be potentially fatal. Read more about the DEA’s 2015 Drugs of Abuse Report: https://www.dea.gov/pr/multimedia-library/publications/drug_of_abuse.pdf
PUBLIC HEALTH EPIDEMIC & TRENDS
An opioid and prescription drug abuse epidemic is sweeping the U.S., impacting all segments of society. Opioid-related hospitalizations and infections from contaminated needles have caused the total opioid-related healthcare costs to rise significantly. Read the DEA’s Drug Fact Sheet for the latest information on substances: https://www.dea.gov/druginfo/factsheets.shtml
IMPACT ON SOCIETY
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and DEA have an effective enforcement program for arresting people and attacking the supply of the opiates. But to reduce the demand for the drugs, the FBI and DEA are collaboratively deploying outreach programs to educate the public about what lies in wait for somebody who experiments opioids.
To help increase awareness about this epidemic and to help educate young people on the dangers of addiction, the FBI and DEA have released the documentary Chasing the Dragon: The Life of an Opiate Addict, a compilation of heart-wrenching first-person accounts by addicts, and family members of addicts, about their experiences.
For more information about how Sentry can meet safety and regulatory demands for pharmaceutical packaging, GMP storage, drug distribution and controlled substance disposal, contact Sentry via email or by phone at 1-866-757-7400.