Your recent article, "Drug Wholesalers Choking Pain-Pill Supply in Tennessee" (May 19), highlights the fundamental challenge of mitigating prescription drug abusers, while ensuring legitimate patient access to appropriately prescribed medicines. This problem reaffirms the need to create a comprehensive and collaborative prescription drug abuse strategy that provides equal weight to enforcement, public health and treatment efforts. As stated in your article, there is no "one-size-fits-all solution" to this issue; pharmaceutical distributors, along with their supply chain partners, are committed to a more coordinated and transparent approach to address prescription drug abuse. The complexity of this public health challenge requires the entire health care supply chain to work together in close partnership with state and federal entities to effectively stem the tide of prescription drug abuse and minimize the potential for unintended consequences. The solution offered by Reps. Thomas Marino, R-Pa., and Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., -- H.R. 4069, The Ensuring Patient Access and Effective Drug Enforcement Act of 2014 -- will go a long way in helping to achieve this goal. Healthcare Distribution Management Association's primary pharmaceutical distributor members are working with all stakeholders to develop and implement solutions that begin to bring the prescription drug abuse epidemic under control, ensure patient safety and allow for continued access to medicines for legitimate patients.
JOHN M. GRAY, President and CEO HDMA
It is the duty of the commander in chief of the armed forces to establish a perimeter of defense around American compounds or other areas of American interests that might be in danger. That is why when Ronald Reagan failed to do so and 200 Marines got killed in Lebanon he was derelict in his duty. It was his responsibility to protect those Marines. Every raw recruit knows about PODs. Now what is this Benghazi story about? The VA clinics have long lines. Those veterans should be attended to in a timely manner, I agree. But it is also true that there would be vastly fewer veterans in those lines if George W. Bush and Dick Chaney had not started the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Now say to yourself "Obama got over 4,000 American soldiers killed and many others wounded in Iraq." I do not think so. I disagree with Obama on many issues, but I detect underhanded Republican politics on these two issues. Can you say Carl Rove? Is the Republican Party morally above this type of political behavior? No, they are not.
DAN B. MONROE, Signal Mountain