Allan Coukell is Pew’s senior director for health programs. He oversees initiatives related to drug and medical device innovation and safety, medical conflicts-of-interest, the pharmaceutical supply chain, pharmacy compounding, antibiotic resistance, prescription drug abuse, FDA and specialty drugs, food safety, school nutrition, as well as other efforts related to health costs and care delivery.
Prior to joining Pew, he practiced as a clinical pharmacist in oncology at the London Health Sciences Center and Ontario Regional Cancer Center, served as a senior medical writer and editor with the medical journal publisher Adis International, and covered health and science as a reporter and producer for WBUR (NPR) in Boston and Radio New Zealand. He is Vice Chair of the Medical Device Innovation Consortium and a board member of the Reagan Udall Foundation for the FDA. He served previously as consumer representative on the FDA’s Cardiovascular and Renal Drugs Advisory Committee.
Using Patient Review and Restriction Programs to Protect Patients at Risk of Opioid Misuse and Abuse
Each year, more than 16,000 people in the United States die from prescription opioid overdoses. As one strategyto minimize these events and other harms associated with prescription drug abuse, public and private insuranceplans are using patient review and restriction (PRR) programs to encourage the safe use of opioids and othercontrolled substances. PRR programs identify patients who are at risk... Read More
Pew Offers Support for Drug Management Programs in Prescription Drug Abuse and Prevention Act of 2015
On June 4, Pew sent a letter to Senators Joe Manchin (D-WV), Angus King (I-ME), and Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), offering support for select provisions in the Prescription Drug Abuse and Prevention Act of 2015. These provisions would allow Medicare Part D plan sponsors to require patients at risk of drug abuse to use pre-designated pharmacies and providers to obtain prescriptions for opioids and... Read More
This week, the House Energy and Commerce Committee held a markup on the 21st Century Cures Act, legislation designed to speed the discovery, development, and delivery of lifesaving drugs and devices. As part of this proposal, legislators included provisions that can help address America’s prescription drug abuse epidemic. Read More