ST. LOUIS, Sept. 22, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Mallinckrodt plc (NYSE: MNK), an industry leader in the effort to address prescription drug diversion and misuse in the United States, today outlined its "Prescription for America's Opioid Epidemic" – six integrated policy initiatives that the company believes, if implemented, would significantly advance the fight against prescription drug abuse and misuse, and make measurable positive contributions to fight the country's current opioid epidemic.
"As an industry pioneer in addressing the problem of prescription drug diversion and misuse and a strong and constant partner to those focused on addressing the problems of drug abuse, Mallinckrodt has developed a unique perspective on potential policy solutions to address the significant problem facing rural areas, towns and cities in virtually every state in the Union. For years, we have worked with policymakers, law enforcement, patient groups and other stakeholders on the issue of opioid diversion and abuse, in particular, and will strongly advocate for public policies directed at prevention and treatment," said Mark Trudeau, Chief Executive Officer and President of Mallinckrodt.
Mallinckrodt has developed a policy statement framed around six initiatives in the fight against prescription drug abuse, which is summarized below:
- Use Opioids Sparingly:The preferred standard of care must be a balanced, multimodal approach to pain management. Mallinckrodt will advocate for incentives, policies and treatment guidelines that focus opioid use on cases where adequate pain management cannot be achieved with an alternative therapy, or where alternative therapies are not available or are inappropriate for a particular patient. Mallinckrodt and others offer such alternative medication options today and the company also supports creation of treatment guidelines to advance this approach.
- Expand Access to Medication-Assisted Treatment: All patients with a substance use disorder should have access to appropriate treatment, including counseling, behavioral therapy and all relevant U.S. Food and Drug Administration-approved medications. Mallinckrodt will advocate for federal and state policies that eliminate barriers to treatment access.
- Mandate Advanced Education for Healthcare Providers: Understanding and identifying the risks associated with opioids are critical to better ensuring that healthcare providers can prevent opioid abuse and misuse before it begins. Mallinckrodt has been a strong advocate for continuing medical education for physicians (including dentists and veterinarians), and education of pharmacists and hospital personnel on appropriate prescribing and warning signs of opioid abuse and diversion. The company will continue to advocate for strengthened state and federal policies that mandate such education.
- Enhance Regulatory Standards and Data Usage to Prevent Diversion: Clarifying responsibilities for tracking opioids in the supply chain, generating better data on the nature of opioid abuse – from both legitimate opioid prescriptions and illicit opioid use – and aligning and strengthening prescription drug monitoring programs (PDMPs) across states are critical steps toward halting the diversion and improper use of opioids. Mallinckrodt has been a leading proponent of PDMPs, and will advocate for regulatory clarity and improved data generation and sharing at the federal and state levels.
- Urge Safe Drug Storage and Disposal: Several national statistics reveal that home medicine cabinets are a primary source of diverted prescription opioids, and so it is critically important to form public and private partnerships to provide ways to safely and responsibly store medications and dispose of unused and unneeded medication. As one such solution, Mallinckrodt has donated approximately 1.5 million drug disposal pouches across the United States and will increase that number incrementally to 2 million by the first quarter of 2018. Some states have also purchased drug disposal pouches for their residents, and Mallinckrodt will advocate for funding to continue these efforts.
- Fund Community-Based Education / Intervention: Education on opioid abuse and community interventions with youth and at-risk populations is critical to achieving healthy and drug-free communities. Mallinckrodt will continue to advocate for federal funding, made available through the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act, and state funding to support community-based education and intervention programs.
Mallinckrodt believes that these six policy initiatives will have a significant impact on reducing opioid abuse and misuse in communities across the United States. The company will continue to actively engage with policymakers, law enforcement, patient groups, and other stakeholders to achieve these policy goals. For more information on Mallinckrodt's work to combat prescription drug abuse and misuse, please visit www.mallinckrodt.com/solutions.
Mallinckrodt is a global business that develops, manufactures, markets and distributes specialty pharmaceutical products and therapies. Areas of focus include autoimmune and rare diseases in specialty areas like neurology, rheumatology, nephrology, pulmonology and ophthalmology; immunotherapy and neonatal respiratory critical care therapies; and analgesics and hemostasis products. The company's core strengths include the acquisition and management of highly regulated raw materials and specialized chemistry, formulation and manufacturing capabilities. The company's Specialty Brands segment includes branded medicines and its Specialty Generics segment includes specialty generic drugs, active pharmaceutical ingredients and external manufacturing. To learn more about Mallinckrodt, visit www.mallinckrodt.com.
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Coleman N. Lannum, CFA
Senior Vice President, Investor Strategy and IRO
Daniel J. Speciale, CPA
Director, Investor Relations
Senior Communications Manager
Chief Public Affairs Officer
Vice President, Government Affairs, Public Policy and Advocacy
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