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So much for the “Opioid Crisis”

A 24-year old is acting as chief of staff of the Office of National Drug Control Policy.

Of course he has no experience, qualifications, or background that qualifies him for this role. And, ts ONDCP has no Director or Chief of Staff, this kid has been one of, if not the, senior executives at the federal agency tasked with addressing the opioid crisis.

Taylor Weyeneth, who happens to be from our town, also submitted a resume to the federal government that exaggerated his “credentials” (he claimed a graduate degree he does not have).

According to newspaper reports, he was involved with a “family company” here that federal records show was “secretly processing illegal steroids from China as part of a conspiracy involving people from Virginia, California and elsewhere.” Weyeneth’s resume claims he was head of production for this company when he was 16.

Weyeneth is the symptom, the Administration’s complete lack of attention to the opioid crisis is the problem.

This personnel debacle follows the Administration’s attempt to appoint Tom Marino as Director of ONDCP. Marino is a politician that sponsored a bill greatly limiting federal oversight of the opioid industry. an attempt that fortunately collapsed amidst bi-partisan outrage.

Seven Administration appointees have left the Office over the last year; that’s more than 10 percent turnover in the 65 person office. There is no Director in place, and no indication there are any plans to appoint one.

The President gives speeches about the crisis, and claims the Administration is doing everything possible to attack the drug crisis – and Taylor Weyeneth is appointed Deputy Chief of Staff.

Words are one thing, actions another.

What does this mean for you?

We aren’t going to get any help from the White House on opioids.


6 thoughts on “So much for the “Opioid Crisis””

  1. Joe,

    This is all part of Bannonism. Getting rid of the “deep state” and paring government down to the point that it no longer works. It is also called, “Starving the beast” a la, Grover Norquist. Of course, he is appointing a 24 year old, because when you act like a 5 year old every day, a 24 year old seems mature.

  2. The enemy is US! Most opioid addictions start with legal pain prescriptions.The reality: there is no responsible use of narcotics for chronic pain- the dose keeps going up and up and it simply doesn’t work- and no responsible use of narcotics for acute pain- the risk of a fatal addiction is far too high to justify them for a short term problem. And, there are sooo many far less dangerous and more effective alternatives. The medical profession needs to own and fix this. I have not needed to started a patient on narcotics in the last 30 years of treating many musculoskeletal injuries.

  3. To the closing comment that “We’re not going to get any help from the White House on opioids” – why should we expect that? Since when do we as a country need executive or any government guidance on how to conduct our lives? I argue that the opioid crisis is primarily the responsibility of those who prescribe – and I am one of those people. We have many groups and individuals that influence behavior within our communities. The government should be a last resort. For this issue we need to hold medical professionals to task to do what’s right and control the flow of opioids. Consider the editorial I’ve written here:

    1. Hello Troy and welcome to MCM.

      I completely agree that docs should be held responsible for prescribing. That said, the government must take action on prevention, diversion, treatment, and funding, as well as prosecution. And the government is how we hold physicians responsible thru legislation and enforcement.

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Joe Paduda is the principal of Health Strategy Associates




A national consulting firm specializing in managed care for workers’ compensation, group health and auto, and health care cost containment. We serve insurers, employers and health care providers.



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