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.
Methadone, a synthetic opioid historically used to treat heroin addiction, is also prescribed for chronic, noncancer pain. While methadone accounts for just 2 percent of opioid pain reliever prescriptions, it is responsible for nearly one-third of all overdose deaths. On Nov. 17, the National Conference of State Legislators hosted a webinar featuring Cynthia Reilly, director of The Pew... Read More
On Oct. 15, Cynthia Reilly, director of The Pew Charitable Trusts’ prescription drug abuse project, submitted written testimony to the Senate Finance Subcommittee on Health Care regarding policy proposals intended to help curb prescription opioid abuse. Read More
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