Webinar: Recent SCOTUS ruling and the implications for opioid prescribers

The recent SCOTUS ruling and the implications for opioid prescribers
Xiulu Ruan v. United States
July 19, 2022
1:00 pm (ET)
....Journal of Opioid Management (JOM) is pleased to present a special webinar focusing on the recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling in the Xiulu Ruan v. United States case and its implication for physicians and other healthcare professionals who prescribe opioids.
....Giventhe current medico-legal environment, physicians have been greatly concerned with the legal jeopardy they may incur when writing opioid prescriptions for their patients. Empirical data suggests that physicians have dramatically curtailed their opioid prescriptions based on that risk and that untreated and undertreated pain may have increased in America.
....The recent SCOTUS ruling clarifies much of that legal risk. In this one-hour webinar, we will discuss multiple facets of this ruling and how it impacts your practice.
....This webinar will assess the legal and policy landscape for healthcare professionals managing patients’ pain, addressing opioid use disorder (OUD) and opioid-involved poisonings in the healthcare setting, as well as coordinating the broader public health response.
Topics Include:
  • The Court's interpretation of the federal Controlled Substances Act (CSA) and its application to a criminal case involving the good faith defense in the context of prescribing
  • Pain relief, prescription drugs, and prosecution: Then and now
  • What is the future impact of the Ruan decision and the use of prescribing guidelines as a weapon? 
  • The impact of prosecutions on access to care and physician behavior
  • Will this decision save lives because fewer patients will be abandoned by their doctors who fear losing their freedom?
  • Prosecution theories and trial strategy post-Ruan. The applicability of the “standard of care” in opioid prosecutions post-Ruan. The duties of an expert witness in opioid cases
  • The difficulty the DOJ will have in satisfying this newly clarified burden
  • Implications for drug abuse prevention
  • Implications for drug enforcement
  • Are investigators looking at the percent of patients prescribed an opioid in a practice?*
*As physicians have exited opioid prescribing, there has been a systemic concentration of opioid prescribers left, willing to treat with opioids where necessary.
Our Speakers
In Alphabetical Order
Michael C. Barnes, JD
Michael C. Barnes, Esq. is Managing Attorney at Sequel Health Law, where he practices health and drug law and policy. He is also Chairman of the Center for U.S. Policy, a not-for-profit organization advancing solutions to the substance use disorder and drug poisoning crisis. Mr. Barnes’s research and analysis have been published in more than 15 legal, policy, and medical journals. He is a member of the advisory board for the Rx and Illicit Drug Summit, the board of directors for the Legislative Analysis and Public Policy Association, the National Sheriffs’ Association’s Drug Enforcement Committee, and the editorial board for the Journal of Opioid Management. Mr. Barnes was a political appointee under President George W. Bush, having served as confidential counsel in the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy. Mr. Barnes is the Special Issue Editor for the upcoming special issue of the Journal of Opioid Management focusing on opioids and the law. Details of the call for papers for this special issue can be found below.
Ronald W. Chapman II, JD
Ronald W. Chapman II, JD is a federal criminal defense attorney specializing in the defense of healthcare providers accused of healthcare fraud and unlawful prescribing. He is the lead appellate counsel for Dr. Couch and Dr. Naum whose judgments were vacated by the Supreme Court in light of Ruan v. United States. He has achieved countless notable trial acquittals of physicians accused of federal crimes including the acquittal of Dr. David Lewis in “the pain center” case, a $454 million dollar healthcare fraud indictment. He is the author of “Fight the Feds: Unraveling Federal Criminal Investigations” and lead contributor for federaldefenseblog.com as well as the president of CCG Healthcare a healthcare compliance firm aimed at utilizing data analytics to achieve compliance and rebut government allegations of fraud.
Lynn R. Webster, MD
Lynn R. Webster, MD is a Senior Fellow at the Center for U.S. Policy and Chief Medical Officer for PainScript, a digital telehealth company. Dr. Webster treated people with complicated pain and substance use disorders for more than 20 years. He is board certified in anesthesiology, pain medicine, and addiction medicine. Dr. Webster served as President of the American Academy of Pain Medicine from 2013 to 2014.
Dr. Webster has authored more than 300 academic publications and has authored columns for the Hill, Wall Street Journal, Chicago Sun Times, Milwaukee Sentinel, and NBC News, among dozens of other media outlets.
He is the author of The Painful Truth (Oxford University Press) and a co-producer of the nationally-syndicated The Painful Truth documentary, both of which chronicle the lives of people with pain and make a compelling case for treating them with compassion.
Stephen J. Ziegler, PhD, JD
Dr. Ziegler is a medico-legal expert and social scientist whose work focuses on drug policy and safe access to palliative medicines in pain and symptom management. He currently resides in the Pacific NW and is involved with the licensing of cannabis for research, recreational, and medical use. Dr. Ziegler has published over thirty-five articles, is a former Mayday Pain Scholar and fellow, founded a nonprofit policy think tank, is a former recipient of the American Jurisprudence Award and the American Judges Foundation Award, and is a professor emeritus from Purdue University. 
Dr. Ziegler has training and experience as a social scientist, attorney, and as a law enforcement officer at the local and federal levels and has served previously as a judicial clerk, assistant prosecutor, defense attorney, and federal task force officer for the Drug Enforcement Administration at the U.S. Department of Justice. Steve was also a research fellow in Switzerland at the University of Zurich’s Institute of Legal Medicine and has given invited talks at the National Press Club in Washington, DC, the World Institute of Pain in Barcelona, Spain, the University of Lyon, France, and at various regulatory and medical conferences throughout the United States.
Stephen J. Ziegler, PhD, JD, was the lead author of anamicus brief** filed before the U.S. Supreme Court in the case of Ruan v. United States, and along with his co-authors Dr. Lynn Webster and Michael Barnes, Esq., argued for the reversal of Dr. Ruan’s conviction. On June 27, 2022, in a 9-0 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court reversed the convictions of Drs. Ruan and Khan and held that a physician’s mental state was key, and that the government must prove that the physician knew that the prescription was unlawful at the time it was issued.
Call for Papers - Details on Special Issue
....Journal of Opioid Management invites the submission of original papers, research articles, case studies, literature reviews, and expert analysis on the topics of this special issue.
....We are pleased to announce that this special issue will be led by Michael C. Barnes, JD. Attorney Barnes has dedicated nearly two decades to developing knowledge in law and policy affecting the fields of pain and addiction medicine. He provides legal, legislative, and regulatory counsel to pain management clinics, substance use disorder treatment providers, laboratories, pharmaceutical and device manufacturers, and digital health and data companies. He leads and advises not-for-profit organizations dedicated to improving health care access and addressing the U.S. substance use disorder and drug poisoning crisis. 
....Attorney Barnes will be joined by a group of legal and policy professionals who will serve as peer reviewers to ensure the most unbiased review of this critical content.
....Annual drug poisoning deaths in the U.S. have quintupled since 1999. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that 107,375 people died of drug poisonings during the 12-month period ending January 2022.(1) The rise in opioid-involved deaths has occurred in three waves, according to the CDC. The first wave began with increased prescribing of opioid analgesics in the 1990s and involved FDA-approved opioid pain relievers. The second wave began in 2010, with rapid increases in deaths involving heroin. The third wave began in 2013, with significant increases in poisoning deaths involving illicitly manufactured fentanyl. Today, illegal fentanyl can be found in heroin, counterfeit pills, and illicit stimulants. Many opioid-involved poisoning deaths include other substances.(2) 
....This special issue will look at the latest legal, legislative, and regulatory actions affecting opioid management of pain and OUD. The issue will also introduce and assess innovative approaches to reducing OUD and opioid-involved poisonings. 
....Our goal is to create an authoritative special issue of JOM that will address some of the most important issues healthcare professionals face in their practice.
....We are seeking original papers, research, case studies, literature reviews, and expert analysis on the following topics:
  • U.S. Supreme Court and other court rulings and their impacts on opioid prescribing and access
  • Legislation and regulation affecting pain management and OUD prevention, interventions, treatment, harm reduction, and recovery support
  • A review of state and local laws and policies and their effectiveness in reducing opioid misuse, OUD, opioid-involved poisonings, and other risks and harms
  • Legal and regulatory changes for opioid treatment program (OTP) take-home doses
  • Laws and regulations affecting telehealth-based opioid treatment (TBOT) 
  • Eliminating the “X-waiver” requirement for office-based opioid treatment (OBOT)
  • Lawsuits brought by patients who need opioids
  • Enforcement and its chilling effects
  • Broader public health aspects of OUD and opioid-involved poisonings, including managing the public health crisis at the local, state, and federal levels, as well as responses in foreign countries
....Our goal is to have the special issue ready for publication in Q1-2023. We are targeting 3,500-6,000 word-length articles. The special issue will be based on the current JOM article format and may include an executive summary created by the editorial team in addition to the standard article abstract.
....Please submit your manuscript by January 30th, 2023 via the manuscript submission link at www.opioidmanagement.com. Please contact us with questions at jom@pnpco.com or 781-899-2702, ext. 114. Our staff is available to assist you from 9 am – 4 pm Eastern Time.
1: https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/nvss/vsrr/drug-overdose-data.htm
2: https://www.cdc.gov/opioids/basics/epidemic.html
Journal of Opioid Management | www.opioidmanagement.com