Fueling an Epidemic: A Flood of 1.6 Billion Doses of Opioids into Missouri and the Need for Stronger DEA Enforcement (Report 3)   [open pdf - 2MB]

"The three major pharmaceutical distributors in the United States -- McKesson Corporation, AmerisourceBergen Corporation, and Cardinal Health, Inc. -- each recorded 2017 revenue in excess of $125 billion and ranked within the top 15 companies on the 2017 Fortune 500 list. Although unknown to many Americans, these companies play a critical role in preventing the diversion of opioid products from pharmacies and other customers to the black market. Under the Controlled Substances Act (CSA), distributors carry a legal obligation to monitor and report suspicious orders of controlled substances to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). The sheer volume of opioid products distributed in the United States makes compliance with CSA obligations a key component of the fight against the opioid epidemic. According to information McKesson, AmerisourceBergen, and Cardinal Health provided to the Committee, for example, these companies shipped around 1.6 billion dosage units of opioid products to Missouri alone between 2012 and 2017. This volume of opioids equated to more than 260 dosage units for every Missourian during the five-year period. During 2015 -- the peak year for opioid shipments to Missouri during 2012 - 2017 -- the three major distributors shipped approximately 52 opioid dosage units per person in the state."

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Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs: http://www.hsgac.senate.gov/
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