Oversight Committee Seeks Purdue OxyContin Documents

On March 21, House Oversight Committee Chairman Elijah Cummings (D-MD) and Rep. Mark DeSaulnier (D-CA) sent a letter to Purdue Pharma requesting documents related to how it has aggressively marketed OxyContin, a key player in the ongoing opioid crisis. The documents requested include the list of Sacklers, the family that owns the company, who worked for Purdue Pharma or served on the board, information about the drug manufacturer’s marketing strategies and communication between employees and family members.

Find the letter here.


Grassley, Wyden Seek Answers About Doctor-Owned Medical Suppliers

On March 21, Sens. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Ron Wyden (D-OR) sent a letter to the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), seeking answers on their efforts to monitor medical suppliers that are partly owned by the physicians whose practices they supply.

The senators expressed their concern that some physician-owned distributorships might be disregarding the Physician Payments Sunshine Act, which requires them to disclose any physician’s ownership or investment interest. The letter notes that such financial relationships carried a possibility for wrongdoing. The senators also asked whether HHS had updated its compliance guidelines for hospitals, and what steps it took when it was told that a physician-owned distributorship failed to report a doctor’s ownership or investment interest.

The senators requested answers to their questions by April 15, saying that they wanted to work together to make sure physician-owned distributorships were properly reporting under the disclosure law so that stakeholders could trust federal health care programs and patients could trust the quality of their care.

Find the letter here.

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