Controversy over new Opioid that is 1,000 times stronger than Morphine
BATON ROUGE - Critics across the country are questioning why the drug Dsuvia is needed. It's a new opioid and painkiller recently given the stamp of approval by the FDA, but many disagree and think it’s a terrible mistake.
“We're in the midst of probably the worst epidemic which is the opioid epidemic in this country which will probably kill and hurt more people than any other epidemic than the country, or the world has seen,” said Coroner Beau Clark.
East Baton Rouge Parish Coroner, Dr.Beau Clark has seen first hand the fatal effects of Opioid use with at least 72 overdose deaths in the parish alone this year.
“This seems like a really blatant disregard for human life. We're talking about a substance, Opioids that kill people, why do we need more when we have a problem with what we have,” said Clark.
According to the FDA, there are strict guidelines for the drug that dissolves in your mouth. It can only be used in hospitals, surgical centers, and emergency rooms. Dsuvia should not be used for more than 72 hours, and it's not available in retail pharmacies.
They say this is a drug that will only be administered in a health care facility for a very short period of time in a very controlled environment. That's great if that's the case. However, later in the statement, they say this was also developed with the Department of Defense, so it's also contradicting itself.
In a statement from FDA commission, Dr. Scott Gottlieb says, "This Opioid formulation, along with Dsuvia's unique delivery device was a medial priority product for the Pentagon because it fills a specific and vital but limited unmet need in treating our nation's soldiers on the battlefield, but Dr. Clark isn't buying it.
"A soldier is out there protecting our country, and if they get injured on the battlefield we have to have mechanisms to manage their pain especially if they have a long transport time from where they get injured and definitive care but I think those things already exist,” said Clark.
Serious risks of using the Dsuvia include respiratory depression, coma, and even death and not to mention the highly addictive quality.
"Having stronger and stronger Opioids is really the wrong direction and certainly sends the wrong message." In Dr. Gottlieb's statement about Dsuvia, he added: "We won't sidestep what I believe is the real underlying source of discontent among the critics of this approval the question of whether or not America needs another powerful opioid while in the throes of a massive crisis of addiction."
Gottlieb says that question will be addressed openly and directly. Dsuvia is set to bring in 1.1 billion dollars in annual sales, but for Clark, he's more concerned with the lives that could be lost in the future.
“We are on track for another record year of increasing the Opioid number as compared to even last year, and I don't see an end in sight, and when we do something like this, and we create another category of an even more powerful Opioid I think it leads to more and more problems,” said Clark.
For more information on Dsuvia, click here.