US Doctors Making Big Money Off Opioid Prescriptions

Doctor listening to patient

Doctor listening to patient

Physicians in the top 10th of 1 percent of opioid prescribers received nine 9 times more money from drug companies in 2014-15.

According to CNN, a team of Harvard researchers found that drug companies gave USA doctors millions of dollars to recommend the drugs, counsel, and talk about opioids.

America's opioid crisis worsens each year, but there might be more to it than meets the eye, particularly the factors behind opioid prescriptions and the doctors that give them out. More importantly, it seems that the more they prescribe, the better the payout.

Over a two- year time frame from 2014 to 2015, nearly 50% of the 811,000 doctors who composed remedies to Medicare patients composed no less than one medicine for opioids, CNN said. It remained unclear if the money led to more drugs being prescribed or more prescription led to higher payouts given to doctors. The figures are astonishing, but so are the payouts doctors receive by prescribing more opioids. Dr. Michael Barnett, assistant professor of health policy and management at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health said that he is not sure if money is engendering recommendation or the recommendation accelerated the money but whatever the case might be, its possibly a risky cycle.

Across the country, 46 people died each day from prescription opioid overdoses in 2016, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. From 1999 to 2015, over 183,000 lives have been claimed by this epidemic.

The founder of the company that makes that painkiller, extremely rich person John Kapoor, was charged in government court last October for purportedly trading influences and kickbacks as an end-result of expanded medicines from doctors.

Another doctor received over a million dollars in a two-year period. That study looked at the database of Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services from 2013 to 2015 and found that there were 375,266 payments made related to opioids, with 68,177 being paid a collective amount of over $46 million.