Op-Ed: Fentanyl pill producers used to mimic other pharmaceuticals, now they don’t have to
Kai Riemenschneider, founder and CEO of Fentanyl-maker Dendreon (dwnr.com) Kai Riemenschneider
The pharmaceutical industry is undergoing a massive transformation because of its long-term viability—and now drugmakers have to deal with new regulatory challenges brought on by fentanyl and other new opioids.
Fentanyl and other potent synthetic opioids like it are being manufactured by drug manufacturers all over the country, and are increasingly being sold in state pharmacies.
“People are now coming in and using these products and then moving out once they are out of stock,” said Kai Riemenschneider, founder and CEO of Dendreon—a drug company based in San Francisco, California.
Riemenschneider told MarketWatch that his company uses a simple solution to counteract these opioid-related problems: Dendreon sells a prescription solution dubbed “FiberFlex.”
Riemenschneider told MarketWatch that Dendreon sells fiber-based products online and through pharmacies, which then can be delivered to the patient.
The idea behind Dendreon’s product is to help patients maintain consistent, regular doses of prescription medications, while also having the option to purchase an over-the-counter drug to manage pain or other symptoms.
But Riemenschneider said, “We hope people won’t need to go to the doctor to address symptoms. And if that does become necessary, we will have a solution.”
The opioid crisis has been a big problem for the pharmaceutical industry in recent years.
Fentanyl is a powerful synthetic opioid, so strong in its effects that it can be fatal.
In 2016, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) issued a “red book” warning of the increased dangers of synthetic opioids like fentanyl. It’s now illegal to sell these drugs over the internet.
But while the U.S. was trying to address the issue of fentanyl, fentanyl was coming to America in other ways—through counterfeit pills