On December 19th, 2018, the Energy and Commerce Committee released a long awaited report titled “Red Flags and Warning Signs Ignored: Opioid Distribution and Enforcement Concerns in West Virginia”. The purpose of the report was to investigate allegations of “opioid dumping” in West Virginia.

Today, we begin a 4-part series with Joseph Rannazzisi, who for over a decade, was the front man in the government’s battle against the opioid epidemic. Mr. Rannazzisi provides in-depth commentary on the Energy and Commerce Committee’s eye opening report, which, notably, is no longer available on the department’s website. Click here to see the report.

Prior to the passage of the Ensuring Patient Access and Effective Drug Enforcement Act in 2016, Mr. Rannazzisi warned congress that passage of the bill would cripple their ability to regulate rogue distributors who were dumping millions of opioids across the country. Today, you’ll hear Mr. Rannazzisi’s unfiltered comments on this game-changing piece of legislation.

As head of the Office of Diversion Control for the Drug Enforcement Administration, he was responsible for cracking down on doctors, pharmacies, drug manufacturers and distributors who did not follow the nation’s prescription drug laws. You may recall him from the 60 Minutes story titled “The Whistleblower” last fall.  

Greg is joined on this episode by guest, Pulitzer Prize winning journalist, Eric Eyre. Mr. Eyre received the distinguished award for courageous reporting, performed in the face of powerful opposition, to expose the flood of opioids flowing into depressed West Virginia counties with the highest overdose death rates in the country.

For more on Mr. Eyre’s award winning work go to: https://www.pulitzer.org/winners/eric-eyre

Listen to this podcast to learn more about who was behind law changes that helped fuel America’s opioid epidemic.