Statement from Fred Muench, Partnership President and CEO, in Response to “60 Minutes” Feature
October 16, 2017byFrederick Muench, PhD
We are disheartened to learn of the revelations in Sunday’s “60 Minutes” story. The story revealed lobbying on behalf of pharmaceutical distributors to limit the authority of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to investigate and prosecute illegal shipments of opioids being diverted to small communities.
Representative Tom Marino of Pennsylvania was one of the main architects of the legislation handcuffing the DEA’s authority, the Ensuring Patient Access and Effective Drug Enforcement Act of 2016. Rep. Marino is now the nominee to lead the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP). He is unfit to lead our national effort to address the opioid crisis.
We have a long-standing relationship with the DEA to help address the opioid issue. We have collaborated with them and local law enforcement to bring meaningful educational programming, resources and guidance to communities across the country.
It’s communities and families that have suffered most in the midst of this crisis, and we stand with Joe Rannazzisi, former head of the Office of Diversion Control at the DEA, and all he has done to help individuals and families struggling with the disease of addiction. Now more than ever, we need a comprehensive public health response to the opioid crisis. As this continues to unravel, we vow to continue helping families and those struggling with addiction.
The keys to protecting and saving the lives of families affected by this epidemic should not be left in the hands of Tom Marino. Please let the White House and Congress know that you agree.