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Letter: Go after Big Pharma to end addiction plague

Go after Big Pharma to end addiction plague

I read the Jan. 4 News editorial on opioid addiction and it was another head-shaker. The editorial aptly described the addiction plague, but the answer is not launching another delusional war on drugs. Look at the tax dollars mentioned in the editorial: an Opiate Epidemic Task Force, 24-Hour Crisis Hotline, I-Stop Legislation, Real-Time Monitoring Registry, free Narcan from our first responders, and that doesn’t cover all of it. Who pays when overdosed addicts enter our emergency rooms? What about the cost and pain families go through trying to get the addicted straightened out?

The answer is simple. With a fraction of the above cost, you go after Big Pharma (Purdue Pharma makes OxyContin) with two objectives. First, you remove this misrepresented drug from the market and second you take Purdue to court and recover the cost of the epidemic it intentionally created.

The answer to the OxyContin epidemic is not throwing tax dollars at ineffective, reactionary programs – it’s going after Big Pharma, the cause of the problem.

Will it be easy? No. Corporations own Congress and how do we coerce our representatives to bite the hand that feeds them? But we can’t even start until we change our thinking. We need to prosecute these corporations (the source) for the disasters they create and stop spending tax dollars cleaning up their mess.

Phil Parshall

Amherst

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