Population Control? –
January 18, 2019 – Researchers used three measures of opioid marketing: number of payments to doctors, marketing value in dollars, and number of physicians receiving marketing. The analysis found all three measures were significantly associated with increased opioid overdose deaths. The mediating factor between marketing and overdose deaths is that more prescriptions are written when doctors receive more marketing, a finding that has been widely supported by previous research.
This study went a step further, said lead author Dr. Scott Hadland, a pediatrician and addiction medicine specialist at Boston Medical Center and Boston University School of Medicine, by linking the data beyond prescriptions to the overdose deaths themselves.
“We went into the work hypothesizing this would be the case,” Hadland said. “We suspected there would be a link. The thing that surprised us was the total dollar value of marketing was less important than the number of times a company interacted with the doctor.”