Another big pharma head honcho has been apprehended – thank our lucky stars for that!

Mr. John Kapoor, the billionaire CEO of Insys Therapeutics, Inc., has been arrested by federal agents for allegedly bribing doctors to prescribe a highly addictive opioid as pain medication and practically endangering the lives of thousands of patients.

The arrest was conducted by the Department of Justice and on the same day that President Trump declared a national emergency to fight opioid addiction in the U.S. “We owe it to our children and our country to do everything in our power to address this national shame and human tragedy,” quoting Trump.

The DOJ accused John Kapoor of “leading a nationwide conspiracy to profit by using bribes and fraud to cause the illegal distribution of Subsys, a powerful Fentanyl spray intended for cancer patients experiencing breakthrough pain.”

Kapoor faces a number of felony charges, including conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, RICO conspiracy, and conspiracy to violate the Anti-Kickback Law. He is said to be facing decades in prison and millions of dollars in fines if convicted.

Acting United States Attorney William D. Weinreb said, “In the midst of a nationwide opioid epidemic that has reached crisis proportions, Mr. Kapoor and his company stand accused of bribing doctors to overprescribe a potent opioid and committing fraud on insurance companies solely for profit.”

The arrest of Kapoor is in the wake of accusations against Big Pharma by irate consumers and even some medical doctors too, of manipulating the supply and prices of essential drugs for chronic and debilitating diseases. Basically, Big Pharma has been accused countless times of operating based on the profit motive instead of keeping prices down so that everyone can afford drugs.

But drugs are not just the question here. Big Pharma has been accused of promoting dangerous drugs with hazardous chemicals and passing them off as the “best cure for cancer” and other chronic diseases. This practice has infuriated a lot of patients who would also like to have information on other kinds of treatment that have no dangerous side effects to health.

Calls for doctors to publicly declare their “support” from big pharmaceutical companies have increased in recent years. To date, a group named ProPublica has opened a website: “Dollars for Docs”, where you can check if your doctor has received money or payments from Big Pharma companies. As of now, 1,630 companies have made payments to more than 681,000 doctors in the U.S. amounting to more than US$3.5 billion!

So, do you know of any other “unscrupulous payments” made to any big-time pharma companies? Share your information in the comments section below!

 

Image by Damanpreet Singh / CC BY 2.0