Thursday May 23, 2013
Two Physicians and Their Motives Leading to Financial GainMarianne Skolek Salem-News.com Investigative Reporter
Part 3 in a series: Curtis Wright, MD and Perry Fine, MD connected by deceit in the prescription drug epidemic killing and addicting in the U.S. and Canada.
(MYRTLE BEACH, SC) - For those not familiar with Curtis Wright, MD, he was employed by the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) from 1989 to October 1997, including multiple senior scientific positions in the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research as Deputy Director and subsequently Acting Director of that division.
Dr. Wright was involved in the review and approval of OxyContin, an opioid manufactured and marketed criminally by Purdue Pharma headquartered in Stamford, Connecticut. After OxyContin's approval by the FDA, Dr. Curtis subsequently went to work for Purdue Pharma -- violating FDA protocol although no action was ever taken against Curtis by the FDA.
When I questioned them about their lack of pursuit in the matter, they cited they were not aware that Dr. Wright was working for Purdue Pharma and the statute of limitations had passed for the FDA to take action against Wright.
Strange that it was all over the Internet that Wright was an employee of Purdue Pharma, but the FDA denied knowledge of Wright approving a drug and then working for the drug company. Conflict of interest? Obviously not to the FDA.
Oh and there was a patent, when Wright was employed by Purdue Pharma. Interested in the details of that patent? It was for a tamper-resistant oral opioid agonist formulation. The inventors on the patent were a Benjamin Oshlack, a J. David Haddox, MD who when OxyContin was launched tried to convince the medical profession that there was no such thing as "addiction" -- it was "pseudo-addiction." A word Haddox coined and pushed the medical profession to over-prescribe opioids by minimizing the dangers. The third individual named on the patent was former FDA employee, Curtis Wright, MD.
Wright was let go from Purdue Pharma several years ago and is still employed in the pharmaceutical industry. For some reason, the U.S. Senate investigation being conducted on the prescription drug epidemic crippling our country failed to include Curtis Wright, MD or J. David Haddox, MD, the founding fathers in the prescription drug epidemic.
A physician being investigated by the U.S. Senate for their contribution to the prescription drug epidemic is Perry Fine, MD. Fine is the past president of the American Association of Pain Medicine (AAPM). Their president-elect is Lynn Webster, MD. Fine, Webster and the American Association of Pain Medicine are all being investigated by the U.S. Senate for their parts in the prescription drug epidemic.
The AAPM leaders have been big supporters of the FDA's Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy (REMS). It has taken the FDA years to address the epidemic of opioid drugs in the country while the epidemic reached over-whelming proportions. REMS is the best the FDA came up with -- and the pharmaceutical industry who brought us the opioid epidemic plays a major part in their contribution to writing the REMS.
Dr. Fine was quoted as saying "We have been advocating for better education for many years and see this as a success. The over-whelming conclusion from AAPM’s Pain Summit in 2009 was for more education in medical schools, across all medical specialties and with patients."
At present, the education programs under the REMS will be mandatory for drug makers -- but voluntary for prescribers. So there is no requirement for the physicians prescribing the opioids crippling us in death and addiction to be required by the FDA to become "educated" -- just the pharmaceutical companies who have made billions of dollars in pushing opioids for all levels of pain.
Dr. Fine was quoted on Purdue Pharma's "In the Face of Pain" website as saying “Advances in neurobiology over the last decade have taught us that acute and persistent pain-inducing events can transform the nervous system, leading to chronic pain states. The challenge before us now is to figure out how to prevent and reverse these pathological processes. Meanwhile, all clinicians who treat people living with chronic pain need to revise their classically taught view that pain is merely a symptom of some other underlying condition in order to accommodate the current science that increasingly suggests that the panoply of chronic pain conditions resemble disease states in and of themselves. More than ever, these scientific discoveries–coupled with the prevalence and impact of chronic pain–call for far greater attention to basic and clinical research and renovations in systems of care to improve treatment outcomes.”
So Dr. Fine are you actually posting on a pharmaceutical company website that pain is no longer a symptom of some underlying condition, but rather a "disease" in and of itself? I sure hope the Senate finds this statement as criminal in the prescription drug epidemic as tens of thousands of people living the horror of addiction and families dealing with death do.
Oh and just in case the Senate is not aware, Dr. Fine was an "expert" witness in the death of Anna Nicole Smith, reality star/personality. Here's what Dr. Fine testified to at the 2010 criminal trial of Smith's boyfriend and two doctors accused of conspiracy in their contribution to the late celebrity's addiction to drugs. Fine testified that the 1,500 pills a month Smith was given did not make her an addict.
Unfortunately Ms. Smith could not dispute Dr. Fine's "expert" testimony.
Next week Kathleen Foley, MD under U.S. Senate Investigation. LP -- Just as there will never be a "Ke-mo-sah-bee", there will never be a "Tonto". What there will be is what is and always will be -- with God's blessing and our love.
Part two in this series: My Opiate Experience
Salem-News.com Investigative Reporter Marianne Skolek, is an Activist for Victims of OxyContin and Purdue Pharma throughout the United States and Canada. In July 2007, she testified against Purdue Pharma in Federal Court in Virginia at the sentencing of their three CEO's - Michael Friedman, Howard Udell and Paul Goldenheim - who pleaded guilty to charges of marketing OxyContin as less likely to be addictive or abused to physicians and patients. She also testified against Purdue Pharma at a Judiciary Hearing of the U.S. Senate in July 2007. Marianne works with government agencies and private attorneys in having a voice for her daughter Jill, who died in 2002 after being prescribed OxyContin, as well as the voice for scores of victims of OxyContin. She has been involved in her work for the past 8-1/2 years and is currently working on a book that exposes Purdue Pharma for their continued criminal marketing of OxyContin.
Marianne is a nurse having graduated in 1991 as president of her graduating class. She also has a Paralegal certification. Marianne served on a Community Service Board for the Courier News, a Gannet newspaper in NJ writing articles predominantly regarding AIDS patients and their emotional issues. She was awarded a Community Service Award in 1993 by the Hunterdon County, NJ HIV/AIDS Task Force in recognition of and appreciation for the donated time, energy and love in facilitating a Support Group for persons with HIV/AIDS.
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