Purdue Pharma L.P. And Denver Health Announce Agreement On National Surveillance System To Monitor Abuse And Diversion Of Prescription Medications

STAMFORD, Conn., and DENVER, Jan. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- Purdue Pharma L.P. and Denver Health have announced an agreement through which Denver Health's Rocky Mountain Poison and Drug Center (RMPDC) has acquired the Researched Abuse, Diversion and Addiction-Related Surveillance (RADARS(R)) System. The RADARS(R) System is a research-based monitoring program designed to study the prevalence of abuse and diversion of controlled prescription medications, such as hydrocodone, oxycodone and methadone, commonly prescribed for pain.

The RMPDC will make RADARS(R) System data available to industry and government stakeholders by subscription. This new arrangement will allow pharmaceutical companies and government regulatory and health agencies to gain access to timely, quantitative and geographically-specific data on the diversion and abuse of selected prescription medications.

In June 2001, Purdue established the RADARS(R) System with the guidance of an external, independent panel of experts to obtain quantitative information on the relative rates of abuse and diversion of, and addiction to, commonly prescribed prescription pain medicines. The RADARS(R) System provides evidence concerning the risks associated with abuse and diversion of these medications for evaluation relative to their established medical benefits.

While the RADARS(R) System complements existing publicly available monitoring systems, it is the first effort to study both diversion and abuse of specific opioid analgesics on a national scale, and is designed to gather data in a more timely and geographically-specific fashion than current publicly accessible databases.

"The RADARS(R) System is one of the most comprehensive surveillance systems available for gathering this type of data and has established a scientific foundation for developing more effective prevention and intervention efforts to address illegal trafficking and abuse of prescription medications," said Richard C. Dart, MD, PhD, Director of the Rocky Mountain Poison and Drug Center, who served as a member of the RADARS(R) System external advisory board.

"The RADARS(R) System is an important step forward because it allows the direct measurement of abuse rates in specific geographic areas," said Herbert D. Kleber, M.D., Professor of Psychiatry at Columbia University and former Deputy Director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy.

"The transfer of this innovative system to an independent third party will allow pharmaceutical companies and government agencies to more readily access valuable data on opioid abuse and diversion," said J. David Haddox, D.D.S., M.D., vice president of Risk Management & Health Policy at Purdue. "Purdue intends to continue to receive data by subscription to the RADARS(R) System in order to inform and enhance our risk management programs."

Denver Health, formerly known as Denver General Hospital, is the Rocky Mountain Region's academic Level I trauma center, and the safety net hospital for the Denver area. The Denver Health system, which integrates acute and emergency care with public and community health, includes Denver Public Health, the Rocky Mountain Regional Trauma Center, Denver Health Paramedic Division, Denver's 911 emergency medical response system, nine family health centers, 12 school-based health clinics, the Rocky Mountain Poison and Drug Center, NurseLine, Correctional Care, Denver CARES, Denver Health Foundation, Denver Health Medical Plan and the Rocky Mountain Center for Medical Response to Terrorism, Mass Casualties and Epidemics.

Purdue Pharma L.P. and its associated U.S. companies are privately-held pharmaceutical companies known for pioneering research on persistent pain. Headquartered in Stamford, CT, Purdue is engaged in the research, development, production, and distribution of both prescription and over-the-counter medicines and hospital products. Additional information about Purdue can be found at http://www.purduepharma.com.

Purdue Pharma L.P.

CONTACT: James Heins of Purdue Pharma, +1-203-588-8069; or Dee Martinez ofDenver Health, +1-303-436-6606

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