As many Veterans enter back into civilian life, we are constantly nagged with pain and mental fatigue that is often “treated” with pharmaceutical drugs. These pills are only masking a source of pain that may never go away for some. The cycle of treating symptoms of one pill’s side effects with yet another pill is common and deadly. When this cycle includes opioids as almost all pain sufferers know, patients become instant addicts. Always dependent on the supply of numbing chemicals that also numbs out life and our poor response to our families, co-workers, and other humans who are not in pain like we are. There is no such thing as Comfortably Numb when addicted to chemicals. No one is comfortable with the cycle.
The VA does not prescribe Oxycontin in it’s retail form, but they do prescribe Oxycodone HCL which is the generic form of Oxycontin as described below:
Purdue Pharm On December 12, 1995, the Food and Drug Administration approved the opioid analgesic OxyContin. It hit the market in 1996. In its first year, OxyContin accounted for $45 million in sales for its manufacturer, Stamford, Connecticut-based pharmaceutical company Purdue Pharma. By 2000 that number would balloon to $1.1 billion, an increase of well over 2,000 percent in a span of just four years. Ten years later, the profits would inflate still further, to $3.1 billion. By then the potent opioid accounted for about 30 percent of the painkiller market. What’s more, Purdue Pharma’s patent for the original OxyContin formula didn’t expire until 2013. This meant that a single private, family-owned pharmaceutical company with non-descript headquarters in the Northeast controlled nearly a third of the entire United States market for pain pills. – How the American opiate epidemic was started by one pharmaceutical company March 4, 2015 by Mike Mariani
Age-adjusted rate* of drug overdose deaths† and drug overdose deaths involving opioids§,¶ — United States, 2000–2014
The figure is a line chart showing the age-adjusted rates of drug overdose deaths and drug overdose deaths involving opioids in the United States during 2000-2014.
Source: National Vital Statistics System, Mortality file.
* Age-adjusted death rates were calculated by applying age-specific death rates to the 2000 U.S. standard population age distribution.
† Drug overdose deaths are identified using International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision underlying cause-of-death codes X40–X44, X60–X64, X85, and Y10–Y14.
§ Drug overdose deaths involving opioids are drug overdose deaths with a multiple cause-of-death code of T40.0, T40.1, T40.2, T40.3, T40.4, or T40.6. Approximately one fifth of drug overdose deaths lack information on the specific drugs involved. Some of these deaths might involve opioids.
¶ Opioids include drugs such as morphine, oxycodone, hydrocodone, heroin, methadone, fentanyl, and tramadol.
In Guilty Plea, OxyContin Maker to Pay $600 Million
“ABINGDON, Va., May 10 — The company that makes the narcotic painkiller OxyContin and three current and former executives pleaded guilty today in federal court here to criminal charges that they misled regulators, doctors and patients about the drug’s risk of addiction and its potential to be abused.
To resolve criminal and civil charges related to the drug’s “misbranding,” the parent of Purdue Pharma, the company that markets OxyContin, agreed to pay some $600 million in fines and other payments, one of the largest amounts ever paid by a drug company in such a case.”Dec 08, 2016
“The Department of Justice (DOJ) alleges that the executives took part in a “nationwide conspiracy” to give healthcare providers kickbacks in exchange for the improper prescribing of Subsys—an opioid medication containing the highly addictive substance fentanyl, which is considered even more dangerous than painkillers like Vicodin.”
“As alleged, top executives of Insys Therapeutics, Inc. paid kickbacks and committed fraud to sell a highly potent and addictive opioid that can lead to abuse and life threatening respiratory depression,” said Harold Shaw, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Boston field division, in a statement. “In doing so, they contributed to the growing opioid epidemic and placed profit before patient safety.”
Here is a civilian quote about “a guy who had it all” and ended up not making it in his struggle with pain, due to opioids:
When a drug epidemic’s victims are white – How racial bias and segregation molded a gentler response to the opioid crisis.
When New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie discusses his compassionate approach to the ongoing opioid epidemic, he frequently brings up a close friend from law school. He describes this friend as perfect — incredibly smart, with a successful law practice, with a beautiful and brilliant wife and kids, and both good looking and athletic. “So we loved him, but we hated him,” Christie joked at a 2015 town hall. “Because the guy had everything, right?”
This friend, however, had a drug problem. Starting with a back injury from running, he was prescribed opioid painkillers. That initial prescription eventually grew into a full-blown addiction. And despite Christie’s and others’ attempts to help, the addiction consumed his friend, who Christie has kept anonymous to protect the family from media attention. Over the next 10 years, despite some stints in rehab, his friend lost his wife, his home, his money, the ability to see his girls, his law practice, and even his driver’s license. Then, he overdosed and died at 52 years old.
“By every measure that we define success in this country, this guy had it,” Christie said. “He’s a drug addict. And he couldn’t get help. And he’s dead.” He added, “When I sat there as the governor of New Jersey at his funeral, and looked across the pew at his three daughters sobbing ’cause their dad is gone, there but for the grace of God go I. It can happen to anyone. And so we need to start treating people in this country, not jailing them. We need to give them the tools they need to recover, because every life is precious.”
To resolve criminal and civil charges related to the drug’s “misbranding,” the parent of Purdue Pharma, the company that markets OxyContin, agreed to pay some $600 million in fines and other payments, one of the largest amounts ever paid by a drug company in such a case.
We can't arrest our way out of this problem, but it's just a total lack of resources for people to get treatment,
“You see a couple a year, to a couple a month, to now we’re a couple a week,” said Hoell. Letting a community know heroin is everywhere, hoping people will get needed help. “We can’t arrest our way out of this problem, but it’s just a total lack of resources for people to get treatment,” said Hoell.
When New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie discusses his compassionate approach to the ongoing opioid epidemic, he frequently brings up a close friend from law school.
“The best road to progress is Freedom’s road.” – JFK
In keeping with progress, the next logical steps are to replace toxic chemicals with nourishing food, exercise and mental clarity that being sober from toxic chemicals will provide for healing.
To lay the foundation for this process, Good Acts has launched We Grow Live that will provide 20 jobs for Veterans in Texas that will be building Food Super Computers in order to know exactly what is in our food.
When food nutrition is identified as a source of lack of healing, and is properly remedied with organic food, the need for medications in pill form decreases.
“Hospitals – Modern Medicine is in need of plant nutrition recipes prescribed to their human patients for maximum healing and symptom problem solving and disease causation. Knowing what goes into the plant and what the human recipient needs nutritionally is valuable for maximum health. Having specific foods that target the needs of a malnourished person that are grown in a custom recipe of nutritional value is the future of medicine. Growing medicine with machine learning and predicting potential plant values for food is the end goal for use in Hospitals. Enter in symptoms into the User Interface of the application, machine learning predicts a suggested diet, specific foods are recommended, and if grown in the patients area, can be attained at a local garden. If no food is available in the area of recommendation, a recipe can be made for the patient to grow their own food in an Automated Enclosed Garden or partnering organic garden.” – We Grow Live – Community
The goal is to leave the Pharms, and start growing Farms. Good Acts needs your help to accomplish this task. If you know of a Veteran who would like to get more information on getting involved in growing their own food, please have them contact us here.