The NCMS hosted a meeting this week to address the opioid prescribing problem and the emerging societal threat posed by synthetic opioids. The group included 41 health care thought leaders from across the state, representing all aspects of health financing, delivery and regulation. “This is a long-running, complicated problem that affects families and individuals from all parts of our society. The medical community is committed to staying engaged in the effort to formulate and implement solutions until we find what works,” said NCMS President Paul Cunningham, MD.
Facilitating the discussion was Joseph Rannazzisi, JD, RPh, who discussed the various emerging synthetic opioids and the challenges of enforcement. From 2005 to 2015, Mr. Rannazzisi served as Deputy Assistant Administrator, Office of Diversion Control, U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, where he was responsible for overseeing and coordinating major pharmaceutical and chemical diversion investigations; the drafting and promulgating of regulations; establishing drug production quotas; and conducting liaison with the pharmaceutical industry, international governments, state governments, other federal agencies, and local law enforcement agencies. The meeting was made possible by Steven Mange, senior policy counsel for NC Attorney General Josh Stein, working closely with the NC Medical Board and NC Medical Society.