'Deadly' Painkiller's Maker Sues Over Prescription Ban
Massachusetts can't override FDA, drug firm says
By Rob Quinn, Newser Staff
Posted Apr 8, 2014 2:19 AM CDT
Updated Apr 8, 2014 5:03 AM CDT
Mass. Gov. Deval Patrick has declared opioid addiction a public health emergency.   (AP Photo/Charles Krupa, File)

(Newser) – Drug maker Zogenix is kicking back against attempts to ban a strong new painkiller that critics warn will kill people as soon as it is released. The firm has filed suit in Massachusetts in an attempt to block Gov. Deval Patrick's executive order banning doctors from prescribing Zohydro, reports the AP. Vermont has also moved to make it harder to prescribe the drug, which was approved by the FDA to treat severe pain last fall, but which officials fear could worsen the country's prescription drug problem and prove lethal for addicts.

Patrick says heroin and opioid addiction is a public health emergency in the state and Zohydro can be blocked until "adequate measures are in place to safeguard against the potential for diversion, overdose, and misuse," a ban Zogenix says is an "impermissible" attempt by the state to override the FDA and set its own drug policy. The company's chief executive says the painkiller was approved after an FDA review process that "serves the nation's public health needs, the medical community and those in severe chronic pain," and the agency's authority "should not be usurped by individual states," the Wall Street Journal reports.

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Showing 3 of 94 comments
People_Suck
Apr 8, 2014 11:14 PM CDT
I wonder how much the pharm company paid for the FDA approval.
Jake319
Apr 8, 2014 8:57 PM CDT
Public safety is no reason to stop a bad drug. Big pharm has squeezed out the street drug dealer. The pain clinics in Florida sold thousands of pain killers to there junkies from other states. In 2005 that they called the Thursday flight from Charleston WV to fort lauderdale the Oxyexpress.
Lefty_Libby
Apr 8, 2014 6:42 PM CDT
One of my elderly friends has chronic, cancer-caused pain. Thanks to government propaganda, she thinks pot is the Devil incarnate. So, instead she takes some Rx opiate from her doctor. She has no idea that her prescribed drug is more addictive and has more side effects than pot. It's probably not as effective either. I've had problems with chronic pain, and the pharmaceuticals were worthless. Nothing ever helped with the pain, except Duragesic or Fentanyl, and those drugs are too heavy to stay on long term.