Discovery, development, regulation and marketing of the medications that are used in health care and the economics of the pharmaceutical industry.

Prescribing Medical Cannabis: Ethical Considerations for Primary Care Providers

Dec. 18, 2019

Aaron Glickman, Dominic Sisti

Abstract [from journal]

Medical cannabis is widely available in the USA and legalisation is likely to expand. Despite the increased accessibility and use of medical cannabis, physicians have significant knowledge gaps regarding evidence of clinical benefits and potential harms. We argue that primary care providers have an ethical obligation to develop competency to provide cannabis to appropriate patients. Furthermore, specific ethical considerations should guide the recommendation of medical cannabis. In many cases, these ethical considerations are extensions of well-...

Long-Term Use of Hydrocodone vs. Oxycodone in Primary Care

Dec. 1, 2019

Rebecca Arden Harris, Henry R. Kranzler, Kyong-Mi Chang, Chyke A. Doubeni, Robert Gross

Abstract [from journal]

Background: Hydrocodone and oxycodone are the Schedule II opioids most often prescribed in primary care. Notwithstanding the dangers of prescription opioid use, the likelihood of long-term use with either drug is presently unknown.

Methods: Using a retrospective cohort design and data from a commerical healthcare claims repository, we compared the likelihood of long-term use of hydrocodone and oxycodone in primary care patients presenting with acute back pain. Treatment


When Patients Take Charge of Opioids: Self-Management Concerns and Practices Among Cancer Outpatients in the Context of Opioid Crisis

Nov. 8, 2019

Salimah H. Meghani, Jesse Wool, Jessica Davis, Katherine A. Yeager, Jun J. Mao, Frances K. Barg

Abstract [from journal]

Context: With concerns about opioid prescribing practices prominent in the professional and lay literature, there is less focus on patients’ self-management of opioids for cancer pain and potential safety risks.

Objectives: To investigate reports of opioid self-management practices and concerns among patients undergoing active cancer treatments—a group excluded from the scope of most policy initiatives on prescription opioids


Medicare Coverage, With a Catch

Oct. 1, 2019

There’s good news and bad news. The good news is Medicare drug plans are increasing coverage of newer, better drugs to prevent blood clots in people at risk. The bad news is that coverage comes with significant strings attached, including higher patient copayments that could prevent access to the newer, better drugs.

A Concept Analysis of Analgesic Nonadherence for Cancer Pain in a Time of Opioid Crisis

Jun. 28, 2019

William E. Rosa, Barbara Riegel, Connie M. Ulrich, Salimah H. Meghani

Abstract [from journal]

Background: Pain is one of the most common symptoms identified along the cancer trajectory. Among patients with moderate to severe cancer pain, nonadherence to prescribed analgesics may complicate treatment plans and exacerbate pain severity. Nonadherent behaviors are likely due to a number of individual/family, provider, and system level factors and may lead to negative pain-related outcomes.

Method: The purpose of this concept analysis is to clarify the concept of analgesic nonadherence for cancer pain and


Endogenous Productivity of Demand‐Induced R&D: Evidence from Pharmaceuticals

Jun. 25, 2019

Kyle Myers, Mark Pauly

Abstract [from journal]

We examine trends in the productivity of the pharmaceutical sector over the past three decades. Motivated by Ricardo's insight that productivity and rents are endogenous to demand when inputs are scarce, we examine the industry's aggregate Research and Development (R&D) production function. Using exogenous demand shocks to instrument investments, we find that demand growth can explain a large portion of R&D growth. Returns to scale have been stable, whereas total factor productivity has declined significantly. Predicted rents based on our