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Feb-04-2012 18:32printcomments

Conflicting Interests in Ohio Over OxyContin

“Anything is better than lies and deceit!” - Leo Tolstoy

Is there a place in this fight where Purdue Pharma officials don't have past or current people in place?
Is there a place in this fight where Purdue Pharma officials don't have past or current people in place?

(MYRTLE BEACH, S.C.) - On January 12, Danna Droz (RPh, JD), Prescription Monitoring Program (PMP) Administrator for the Ohio State Board of Pharmacy conducted a presentation at Findlay College on Ohio's Pill Mill Bill HB 93 and its impact on health care.  A link to Ms. Droz's presentation is provided here

At the beginning of the presentation is a "disclaimer" which reads:

I, Danna Droz, have no significant financial interest or arrangements with any organization that could be perceived as a real or apparent conflict of interest in the context of the subject matter of this presentation. 

It appears that Ms. Droz has forgotten about an ethics investigation relating to her ties to the maker of OxyContin, Purdue Pharma.  The below may refresh her memory:

Monday, December 03, 2001
Ethics opinion sought on post

State official on drug maker's panel

The Associated Press
        FRANKFORT — The state's drug control manager is serving on a national advisory board funded by the manufacturer of the pain reliever OxyContin.
        Danna Droz, a manager for the drug control unit of the Kentucky Cabinet for Health Services, has been on the 14-member advisory board assembled by Purdue Pharma L.P., of Stamford Conn., since June.
        The Research Abuse Diversion Addiction Related Surveillance System, which is seeking solutions to deal with OxyContin abuse and other prescription drug abuse problems, advises the federal Drug Enforcement Administration.
        OxyContin, which became a problem in eastern Kentucky this year, led to the arrests of more than 200 people for trafficking in the drug in February. The drug is a powerful time-release pain killer that abusers either inject or snort for an immediate high.
        Dr. Rice Leach, commissioner for the Department of Public Health, requested an Executive Ethics Commission inquiry on whether Ms. Droz has conflict of interest with Purdue Pharma. A ruling is set for January.
        Ms. Droz is among othr current and former public officials working in some capacity with Purdue Pharma.
        Joe Famularo, a former U.S. attorney for Kentucky's Eastern District, has also been an unpaid consultant for the company.
        Ms. Droz, who also served on the Governor's OxyContin Task Force trying to address the OxyContin abuse problem, declined comment and referred all questions to Purdue Pharma.
Why would you refer requests to Purdue Pharma, Ms. Droz if you had no association with them?  I wrote about Ms. Droz and her allegiance to the maker of OxyContin in November 2011.  See link
In October 2011, the National Association of State Controlled Substances Authorities (NASCSA) accepted a $200,000 check from Purdue Pharma at the organization's 27th annual conference in Portland, Maine.
Ms. Droz serves on the Executive Committee of NASCSA in "Special Projects."   Alan Must, VP State Government & Legislative Affairs at Purdue Pharma, serves on the Membership Committee of the same association.
VA hospitals and clinics in Ohio can now check Ohio Automated Rx Reporting System (OARRS) if staff suspects a patient of "doctor shopping."  However, as the database administrator, Ms. Droz advised the staff cannot input any prescriptions it writes or fills into the system,
In other words, VA doctors and pharmacists in Ohio have a complete picture of a patient's controlled-drug prescription history available to them, but the VA will be blocked from plugging into the system.  The majority of private physicians will be able to utilize the system.  Freely translated, veterans and their eligible family members could have their prescriptions filled by private doctors in practice -- the same prescriptions that had previously been filled at the VA.

"Today's vets have more access to private health care benefits through jobs or whatever else," Droz said. "Many get health care through the VA and the private system and could utilize both systems to get drugs of abuse.  "It's a major blind spot."
No, Ms. Droz the major blind spot is you being at the controls monitoring the prescription drug epidemic in Ohio and your ties to Purdue Pharma.  Ohio Department of Health officials say they are unable to supply the number of deaths attributed to opiates in 2011 or even 2010. But from 2004 to 2009, three to four people on average were dying every day from unintentional drug overdoses in Ohio. OxyContin and Opana were the biggest contributor to fatal overdoses in 2009.
So I got to thinking why would someone who graduated from the University of Kentucky, College of Pharmacy go on to graduate from Brandeis School of Law at the University of Louisville, and a member of the Kentucky and Ohio Bars not go into private law practice -- but choose to serve on a state pharmacy board.
Unless, of course, Ms. Droz is already in a private law practice -- working for the pharmaceutical industry -- possibly Purdue Pharma..  Wake up Ohio you have a fox in the hen house.

LP --  Only injectorpods know what I meant when I said "wibderful tune".  Thank you for fighting them off and keeping our world safe.  I treasure our "oh tay" life and your love of farina.

_________________________________ 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.

Marianne Skolek
National Activist for Victims of OxyContin and
Purdue Pharma - a criminally convicted pharmaceutical company
Staff Writer,

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Jazmin February 25, 2013 6:29 am (Pacific time)

Testimony United States Senate Committee on the JudiciaryEvaluating the Propriety and Adequacy of the OxyContin Criminal Settlement July 31, 2007Marianne Skolek , --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

My name is Marianne Skolek. I had a beautiful 29 year old daughter named Jill. She had the misfortune of being prescribed OxyContin in January 2002 and was killed on April 29, 2002. Jill left behind her son Brian who was 6 years old at the time of his mom's death. Brian is with me in the Senate today. Why did a $9 billion privately held pharmaceutical corporation take the life of my precious dateguhr? My work against Purdue Pharma for the past 5 years initially focused on J. David Haddox, dentist turned psychiatrist and Senior Medical Director of Purdue Pharma. I also focused on Robin Hogen, former Public Relations spokesman for Purdue Pharma. In 1996, the American Academy of Pain Medicine and the American Pain Society issued a set of guidelines for the use of opiates in the treatment of chronic pain. These guidelines are referred to as a consensus statement. The statement leaning toward a more liberal use of opiates was adopted just as the marketing push for OxyContin began. This consensus statement was produced by a task force, which was headed by J. David Haddox, former president of the American Academy of Pain Medicine, who was senior medical advisor for Purdue Pharma the maker of OxyContin. Haddox was quoted as saying that the point was to gather consensus. If you are going to do this, this is how it should be done. There was question as to whether it was ethical for Haddox to be associated with a pharmaceutical manufacturer to guide the formation of a document that would play a key role in promoting the use of products made by the company Purdue Pharma. When OxyContin was introduced on the market, it was intended for the treatment of cancer patients and they were losing the patent on MS Contin. At one point, in the greed and sheer evil of Purdue Pharma, they intended to market OxyContin to OB/GYN patients. I flooded the country with emails and faxes to Attorney Generals and the media reporting that we had enough devastation in the country without addicting infants to OxyContin. This marketing ploy was terminated by Purdue Pharma. Pain patients from various pain societies will speak of the merits of OxyContin and their quality of life being restored because of the drug. These pain societies throughout the country are funded by Purdue Pharma. Let the pain patients not a part of any funded pain society of Purdue Pharma speak about the quality of life they have after becoming addicted to OxyContin and when their physicians refuse to renew prescriptions for the drug and they go on the street to buy the drug because they can't kick the habit of this less addictive drug. Ask the FDA and the DEA why OxyContin is in such plentiful supply on the streets all over the country. Jill and thousands of victims of an out of control, greedy pharmaceutical company headed by three convicted criminals marketed OxyContin as less likely to be addictive and abused. There are assertions that the only victims in the criminal activities of Purdue Pharma were the physicians who were misled by Purdue Pharma's sales representatives. The physicians, who were used as pawns by Purdue Pharma, were not ingesting a powerful narcotic that was being marketed as less likely to be addictive or abused the patients were ingesting OxyContin and were becoming addicted and dying. If patients aren't victims of Purdue Pharma's criminal activities, tell me what they should be called. The addictions and loss of lives because of OxyContin continue to impact every state in the country every single day. The far reaching consequences of the criminal activity of Purdue Pharma did not end in 2001 or 2002 as they would like it to be believed no one can turn the clock back. This has been allowed to become a national crisis because there was no conscience in the marketing of OxyContin there was only greed. We all hear on the news every day about individuals who work for government agencies or private industry who embezzle funds. Purdue Pharma has been found criminally responsible for marketing OxyContin which resulted in death and addiction. Is it justice to have these convicted criminals these monsters fined an amount of money that is very well afforded by them, or will the Senate send a message that because of the magnitude of the crime committed, they deserve to be further investigated by the Senate. Anything that is imposed against these convicted criminals will not give us back Jill, but I will guarantee that Purdue Pharma will never forget the name Jill Skolek. When I began my work at exposing these three convicted criminals and Haddox and Hogen, I told Hogen that you messed with the wrong mother and they did because my work is not over. I want to know why the FDA allowed OxyContin to cause such destruction to the lives of scores of innocent victims. I want to know why 12 warning letters were sent by the FDA to Purdue Pharma about their marketing of OxyContin and to this day, they are not required to put highly addictive or addictive on the label of the drug. I want to know why the FDA deleted without reading so many of my emails about the marketing of OxyContin until this last month. I want to know why Curtis Wright while employed by the FDA played an intricate part in the approval of OxyContin and then was hired by Purdue Pharma. I want to know why Attorney General Blumenthal of Connecticut's Citizen Petition which requests strengthened warnings for OxyContin as a result of information they uncovered in their investigation against Purdue Pharma has been sitting at the FDA without any action since January 2004. I want to know how Rudy Guliani could be the big star hired by Purdue Pharma to play down the abuse and diversion of OxyContin and also get paid by the DEA for work performed for them. I want to know why the Sackler family has not been held accountable for their involvement with Purdue Pharma and the mass marketing of OxyContin. Eventually Purdue Pharma will introduce another blockbuster drug similar to OxyContin and as they did with another devastating drug called Palladone. Palladone was removed from the market after a couple of months. I like to think that my faxes and emails all over the country played an intricate part in having it removed. My advice to Purdue Pharma is when you are ready to introduce another drug such as OxyContin or Palladone, look behind you, because I will be right there. I will be working at having Howard Udell disbarred for his criminal activities and Paul Goldenheim's medical license revoked for what amounts to white collar drug trafficking. I will be actively working at Friedman, Udell and Goldenheim never being able to work in the pharmaceutical industry again because they are convicted criminals who criminally marketed OxyContin. I will accomplish this hopefully with the help of Attorney General Blumenthal -- do not doubt me at not being successful at achieving this. Her name was Jill Carol Skolek. She did not deserve to be prescribed OxyContin and die because of the criminal activities of individuals of Purdue Pharma . Please give my family justice and investigate the criminal activity of Purdue Pharma . Thank you Senators for giving me the opportunity to speak for thousands of victims of an out of control pharmaceutical corporation.

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Sean Flynn was a photojournalist in Vietnam, taken captive in 1970 in Cambodia and never seen again.

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