Wednesday, May 28, 2014


District Attorney Tony Rackauckas representing Orange County and County Counsel Orry Korb from Santa Clara County have filed a consumer protection lawsuit against five opioid manufacturers. The accusation is that the five companies conducted a more than decade-long marketing campaign to mislead doctors about the risk of long-term opioid management. The named defendants are Purdue Pharma, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Cephalon, Janssen Pharmaceutical, Endo Health Solutions, and Actavis. The lawsuit also names the American Pain Foundation, the American Academy of Pain Medicine, and the American Geriatric Society.

The lawsuit asserts that "opiod makers were not the first to mask their deceptive marketing efforts in purported science. The tobacco industry also used key opinion leaders in its effort to persuade the public and regulators that tobacco use was not addictive or dangerous."

We owe this information to Tom Lynch whose editorial, "Another Day, Another Battle in the War on Over-Prescribing," was published as a column by WorkCompCentral on 5/28/14.

Our interest is how this matter now dovetails with the Malpractice Initiative that the trial lawyers are expected to qualify for the November ballot in California in an effort to repeal the MICRA reform instituted by Gov. Brown during his first administration. The Initiative is aimed at drug-testing for physicians and doesn't mention that annual insurance premiums for a family of four may be increased by as much as $1,000.

Although the trial lawyers espouse drug testing for physicians, pilots, and others, they do not include themselves.

We now recommend that they find a way to include drug testing not only for themselves but also for pharmaceutical companies, their executives, and all of their employees including sales department personnel.

Just call it The Full Employment Drug Testing Act (FEDTA).

Late Flash: the trial lawyers' initiative to increase malpractice awards for themselves has been designated Proposition 46 while the campaign against it, which we support, will be called the No on 46 Campaign.

Additional References

"When Should Lawyers be Drug Tested?" by Dr. Robert Weinmann,, 4/28/14

"Random Drug Testing for Lawyers," The Weinmann Report (, 4/24/14)

"California's Ballot initiative will mandate random drug testing ONLY for doctors (why not attorneys?)," by Rehan Sheikh,, {}, {} 5/20/14



  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

    1. Apologies, readers: we removed an unsolicited advertising copy that appears to have been sent by mistake. We also removed our disavowal since the comment was deleted. - editor

  3. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  4. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.