December 2018 Newsletter
Prepared by Van Scoyoc Associates
CHINA TO CLASSIFY FENTANYL AS CONTROLLED SUBSTANCE
China has agreed to classify Fentanyl following discussions between Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping during the G-20 summit in Buenos Aires. Read more here.
SURGEON GENERAL: FEDERAL DRUG CLASSIFICATION NEEDS CHANGES
On December 6, U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams said the nation’s drug classification system should be revisited, but illegal drugs shouldn’t simply be decriminalized nationwide. Read more here.
KALÉO ROLES OUT CHEAPER VERSION OF OPIOID ANTIDOTE
On December 12, Kaléo said it will sell an authorized generic of its opioid overdose treatment Evzio at a list price of $178 for a carton with two auto-injectors starting in mid-2019. Read more here.
2018 MONITORING THE FUTURE SURVEY
An annual NIH survey found 20.9 percent of high school seniors reported vaping in the previous month, up from 11 percent in 2017. In addition, marijuana vaping also rose from 9.5 percent in 2017 to 13.1 percent this year, according to the survey. Read more here.
SURGEON GENERAL ISSUES RARE PUBLIC HEALTH ADVISORY ON TEEN VAPING
Surgeon General Jerome Adams issued a public health advisory on teen vaping on December 18, just the fourth such advisory from the office in 13 years. Read more here.
ADDICTION TREATMENT RATING SYSTEM IN THE WORKS
Shatterproof, a group working on addiction issues, announced a $5 million project to build a publicly available rating system for addiction treatment programs. Read more here.
FDA PANEL RECOMMENDS NALOXONE CO-PRESCRIBING
An FDA panel on December 18 approved changes to opioid labels that recommend the overdose antidote naloxone be prescribed at the same time as the painkillers. Read more here.
MARIJUANA SALES PARTNERSHIP
Swiss drugmaker Novartis and Canadian pot company Tilray are partnering to distribute marijuana products globally through Novartis’ generic unit Sandoz. Read more here.
MARIJUANA STATES RIGHTS AMENDMENT BLOCKED
Senator Cory Gardner (R-CO) failed to add language to the Senate’s criminal justice bill that would ensure the federal government respects Colorado’s marijuana legalization. Read more here.
CRIMINAL JUSTICE BILL SIGNED INTO LAW
A bill to overhaul criminal sentencing guidelines that would curtail jail sentences for some nonviolent offenders, help some ex-convicts adjust to life after release from prison, and address disparities between crack and powder cocaine offenses was signed into law. Read more here.
COMMITTEE REPORT DETAILS ALLEGED OPIOID-DUMPING IN WEST VIRGINIA
The Energy and Commerce Committee on December 19 released a report summarizing its findings after concluding its bipartisan investigation into allegations of opioid-dumping in West Virginia. Read more here.
HHS RECOMMENDS CO-PRESCRIBING OF NALOXONE
On December 19, HHS recommended prescribing or co-prescribing naloxone to patients at high risk for an opioid overdose. Read more here.
PAIN TASK FORCE ADVISES NON-OPIOID THERAPIES AS FIRST OPTION
Non-opioid medicines should be the first option whenever possible and payers should reconfigure reimbursement plans to encourage their use, according to an inter-agency draft report released on December 28. Read more here.