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On the Frontlines of America’s Opioid Epidemic: Dr. Arun Gupta’s Breakthrough Solutions Ep. 78
Episode 7815th July 2022 • Fascinating Entrepreneurs • Natasha Miller
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Dr. Arun Gupta is a solo primary care physician for 35 years, and an addiction doctor for the past 16 years. Dr. Gupta is the author of the highly acclaimed new book, The Preventable Epidemic: A Frontline Doctor’s Experience and Recommendations to Resolve America’s Opioid Crisis is the best seller, on WSJ & USA today Amazon #1, B&N number 1. Over the years of treating addiction patients, he has seen firsthand the devastation and heartbreak caused to their families and has a passion for stopping the Opioid Crisis that is claiming so many lives in our country. He started a tax-exempt Foundation RAOE (Resolve America's opioid epidemic) has a 501(c )3 status. He is trying to educate the policymakers, the media & public & eventually provide communities that need help. He could be reached by RAOEfoundation.org or Thepreventableepidemicbook.com

He is an American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) certified Addiction Provider and Certified Medical Review Officer. He enjoys teaching & is a highly sought-out speaker. He is invited to speak at the Rotary International annual meeting in Houston Texas on June 6th, 2022.

Where to find Dr. Arun Gupta

Website: thepreventableepidemicbook.com

SPONSOR

This episode is sponsored by Entire Productions- Creating events (both in-person and virtual) that don't suck! and Entire Productions Marketing- carefully curated premium gifting and branded promo items. 

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Transcripts

Arun Gupta:

If a person who's addicted can get hold of this book is not

Arun Gupta:

going to do anything for that person.

Arun Gupta:

This book is for a common man, a common woman, a parent, and

Arun Gupta:

then the policy makers, the insurance companies, and the media.

Natasha Miller:

Welcome to FASCINATING ENTREPRENEURS.

Natasha Miller:

How do people end up becoming an entrepreneur?

Natasha Miller:

How do they scale and grow their businesses?

Natasha Miller:

How do they plan for profit?

Natasha Miller:

Are they in it for life?

Natasha Miller:

Are they building to exit these and a myriad of other topic?

Natasha Miller:

We'll be discussed to pull back the veil on the wizardry of successful

Natasha Miller:

and FASCINATING ENTREPRENEURS.

Natasha Miller:

My book RELENLTESS is now available.

Natasha Miller:

Everywhere books can be bought online, including Amazon and BarnesAndNoble.com.

Natasha Miller:

Try your local indie bookstore too.

Natasha Miller:

And if they don't have it, they can order it.

Natasha Miller:

Just ask them, the reviews are streaming in and I'm so thankful

Natasha Miller:

for the positive feedback, as well as hearing from people that my

Natasha Miller:

memoir has impacted them positively.

Natasha Miller:

It is not enough to be resilient.

Natasha Miller:

You have to be relentless.

Natasha Miller:

You can go to the relentless book.com for more information.

Natasha Miller:

Thank you so much.

Natasha Miller:

Today's episode is just a little bit different than normal.

Natasha Miller:

I'm interviewing Dr.

Natasha Miller:

Arun Gupta.

Natasha Miller:

Who's a solo primary care physician and has been for 35 years.

Natasha Miller:

Doctors don't often refer to themselves as an entrepreneur, but if you have your

Natasha Miller:

own practice, that's exactly what you are.

Natasha Miller:

He's an addiction doctor for the past 16 years.

Natasha Miller:

He's the author of the highly acclaimed new book, the preventable

Natasha Miller:

epidemic, a frontline doctor's experience and recommendations to

Natasha Miller:

resolve America's opioid crisis.

Natasha Miller:

It's a best seller on both wall street journal and USA today's lists.

Natasha Miller:

And he has been treating addiction patients for years and has firsthand

Natasha Miller:

experience with the devastation and heartbreak cause to their families.

Natasha Miller:

He also has a passion for stopping the opioid crisis that is claiming

Natasha Miller:

so many lives in our country.

Arun Gupta:

The medical profession and the business has gone down tremendously

Arun Gupta:

over the last two, three decades.

Arun Gupta:

As the MBS have gone into the medical business for 1 million doctors, the 5

Arun Gupta:

million MBS that control that business.

Arun Gupta:

So the private practitioners are a dying commodity today.

Arun Gupta:

They're curing us down, cornering us in every way, and we're barely survive.

Natasha Miller:

Oh, wow.

Arun Gupta:

Golden days are gone, you know, 20, 30 years ago for physicians.

Natasha Miller:

So what support team do you have running your business today?

Arun Gupta:

I am really in a bad shape.

Arun Gupta:

All my trained staff last year, quit for hospital jobs.

Arun Gupta:

One went to nursing school and another went to a dental job, which

Arun Gupta:

is even better than medical job.

Arun Gupta:

So I am not in a very good shape, right now.

Natasha Miller:

Wow.

Natasha Miller:

So you are a physician, a doctor who is also an entrepreneur, and you don't

Natasha Miller:

have actually the support that you probably need to run your business,

Natasha Miller:

but you have all the accreditation and skills and talent to do what

Natasha Miller:

you're put on this earth to do.

Natasha Miller:

It's an interesting position to be put in currently.

Arun Gupta:

Yeah, it's a very difficult position.

Arun Gupta:

So because of my book, we created a foundation called Resolve

Arun Gupta:

America Opioid Epidemic Foundation.

Arun Gupta:

So I do have a board and some people are IT, but they do not help me with day to

Arun Gupta:

day functioning, but they advise me around this topic of my book and the foundation.

Natasha Miller:

Right.

Natasha Miller:

So let's talk about your specialty in addiction treatment, very interesting.

Natasha Miller:

How did you stumble upon this specialty?

Arun Gupta:

I was not destined to get into the field of either psychiatry or

Arun Gupta:

treating them mind problems, but what happened is from 1995 to 2006, I was

Arun Gupta:

appointed as a local jail physician, that two jails in here in town.

Arun Gupta:

And for 11 years, I took care of those people in addition to working in my office

Arun Gupta:

hospital and the nursing home settings.

Arun Gupta:

And I seen lot more sickness and misery in the jail as I was

Arun Gupta:

relieved of that responsibility.

Arun Gupta:

I had more free time.

Arun Gupta:

And I started looking into why do we have this problem

Arun Gupta:

and what can be done about it?

Arun Gupta:

And I became a member of American society of addiction.

Arun Gupta:

I was primarily bothered why the death rates are going up and why

Arun Gupta:

people are looking into getting drugs.

Arun Gupta:

And so I learned a lot from American Society of Addiction Medicine, and

Arun Gupta:

that's how I got into this space.

Natasha Miller:

I think a lot of people just in general, whether listening to

Natasha Miller:

this podcast or not has some experience with a family member or a loved one or

Natasha Miller:

someone that they're close to that has an addiction where whether it's known

Natasha Miller:

or not, especially in the opioid crisis.

Natasha Miller:

I know I have had family members who are reliant upon oxycodone or morphine.

Natasha Miller:

My question would be why are doctors continuing to allow them to be filled?

Arun Gupta:

Well, it's not doctors.

Arun Gupta:

So doctors have no training in treating pain on a long term basis,

Arun Gupta:

nor do they have any training, even in America to treat addictions.

Arun Gupta:

So 25 years ago when Oxycontin and stuff exploded, the federal

Arun Gupta:

government put pressure on the doctors and said, you cannot undertreat

Arun Gupta:

patient's pain, or you could get sued.

Arun Gupta:

So in the fear of getting litigated, the physicians started writing pain pills.

Arun Gupta:

The drug companies came to the doctors and said, "Hey, my product is the best."

Arun Gupta:

So with no training, it's just like trying to fly a plane

Arun Gupta:

without knowing how to ladder.

Arun Gupta:

That's exactly the same situation, both for the doctor and for the patient.

Arun Gupta:

So that's what created this big mess on top of it.

Arun Gupta:

Thousands of new regulations that have been passed to curb the pills and the

Arun Gupta:

pill mills and restrict doctors from getting writing too many narcotics has

Arun Gupta:

made life difficult for access to care and patients to get access from the

Arun Gupta:

doctors and the necessary medications.

Natasha Miller:

Do you think we are at the beginning, middle or end of

Natasha Miller:

the challenge of figuring this out?

Arun Gupta:

Well, I do not think anybody is trying to figure it out.

Arun Gupta:

What happened is in 2017, CDC said two things that first time the overdose

Arun Gupta:

death rate went to 70,000 and it was slowly increasing from 16,099 by 10%-15%.

Arun Gupta:

So first time it dies 70,000.

Arun Gupta:

The second thing it said.

Arun Gupta:

700,000 people have died in the previous 18 years from drug overdose.

Arun Gupta:

So I was faced with a question from a senior administrator

Arun Gupta:

from the, from our community.

Arun Gupta:

And she said, doc, "When is all this going to end?"

Arun Gupta:

And I was like, I don't have a good answer.

Arun Gupta:

And she said, "What do you mean?"

Arun Gupta:

I said, when everybody dies.

Arun Gupta:

She looked at me, I looked at her and I said, I got to do something

Arun Gupta:

to figure out what's going on.

Arun Gupta:

So with next three, four years of my own research, the problems I faced taking care

Arun Gupta:

of these people, I was then advised that I should write a book of a good message.

Arun Gupta:

So even after the book came out and, you know, Mike Alden and other

Arun Gupta:

people helped me out to promote the book and has done good at the, what

Arun Gupta:

you call box office or whatever

Arun Gupta:

But the media and the policy makers do not want to talk about it.

Arun Gupta:

They keep on saying it's, it's getting worse.

Arun Gupta:

Let's do something out of the box.

Arun Gupta:

Thinking my book provides all the path that's possible to be.

Arun Gupta:

They don't want to talk about it.

Natasha Miller:

Okay.

Natasha Miller:

So let's talk about the book it's called The Preventable Epidemic.

Arun Gupta:

Yes.

Natasha Miller:

The frontline doctor's experience and recommendations to

Natasha Miller:

resolve America's opioid crisis.

Natasha Miller:

So who is your target audience?

Natasha Miller:

Who do you want to buy the book?

Natasha Miller:

And what do you hope to achieve?

Natasha Miller:

With the publication of this book.

Arun Gupta:

My only goal is that I cannot understand that it is normal or okay.

Arun Gupta:

For 300 young Americans, healthy Americans to die every day.

Arun Gupta:

My only success is to see that the curve bends down and these young people

Arun Gupta:

don't have to die as a physician.

Arun Gupta:

My vocation is to keep people healthy and alive as soon as possible.

Arun Gupta:

So the policies have been made in a way that it restricts access to care

Arun Gupta:

and we cannot provide care without the fear of our own license and life.

Arun Gupta:

So that's my main goal.

Arun Gupta:

Who's the book for, I have struggled with the answer.

Arun Gupta:

I'll give you different answers.

Arun Gupta:

I've given it to you.

Arun Gupta:

I've said it's for everybody I've been told.

Arun Gupta:

No book is for everybody.

Arun Gupta:

It's for males.

Arun Gupta:

It's females 20 years old, 40 years old, 30 to 50 years old.

Arun Gupta:

So I could tell you if a person who's addicted can get hold of this book, is

Arun Gupta:

not going to do anything for that person.

Arun Gupta:

This book is for a common man.

Arun Gupta:

A common woman, a parent, a relative, a family member, a policeman, a doctor,

Arun Gupta:

a nurse, anybody who is in working in this space and then the policy makers,

Arun Gupta:

the insurance companies and the media.

Arun Gupta:

So I was recently invited to do a presentation at a rotary international

Arun Gupta:

annual meeting in Houston two weeks ago.

Arun Gupta:

On June 6th, I did a presentation for, at a breakout session.

Arun Gupta:

I am a Rotarian.

Arun Gupta:

And I've been asking Rotary Club, Rotary International to take this up as a

Arun Gupta:

challenge, but they had a thinking that once they can eradicate polio only.

Arun Gupta:

Then they will take up some big project.

Arun Gupta:

So three years ago I was almost there, but then COVID happened and social happened.

Arun Gupta:

So they divided all their attention there.

Arun Gupta:

Now with my book coming out, they invited me to come there and speak.

Arun Gupta:

And I think I may be closer now than I was three years ago to encourage rotor

Arun Gupta:

international, to take up as a project.

Arun Gupta:

The problem is the problems are very unique in America.

Arun Gupta:

Because of the legislations and all the policies that have been created.

Arun Gupta:

So it's very unique.

Arun Gupta:

Rotary International is an international organization.

Arun Gupta:

They do things at a global level.

Arun Gupta:

So we made a north America chapter.

Arun Gupta:

And so let's see where it goes.

Natasha Miller:

And so can you walk me and the listeners through a couple of the

Natasha Miller:

points of the book that you think might be most impactful for us to hear now?

Arun Gupta:

I was faced this question.

Arun Gupta:

What are the problems that we have in this country?

Arun Gupta:

So the first problem is enforcement.

Arun Gupta:

A law and order approach has not worked for a hundred years.

Arun Gupta:

So in 1913 a innocent narcotic tax act was started to control the trade

Arun Gupta:

of illegal drugs around the world.

Arun Gupta:

It said a lot of things, and it said addiction is a moral failing and

Arun Gupta:

could not be treated even though the Supreme court said in 1962, that it

Arun Gupta:

is wrong and it is treatable and it's a chronic condition that attitude has

Arun Gupta:

not changed from the government to the policy makers, to the licensing and

Arun Gupta:

regulation and insurance companies.

Arun Gupta:

The second problem is stigma towards the disease.

Arun Gupta:

So the stigma is preventing people to get access.

Arun Gupta:

Where is the stigma coming from?

Arun Gupta:

First is coming from the Harrison narcotic act.

Arun Gupta:

Secondly, there is no education in American medical schools.

Arun Gupta:

All these years we heard was "Zelle colleague is a junkie."

Arun Gupta:

It's a druggie take care of the overdose, or don't let them die.

Arun Gupta:

They're gonna go home and do the same stuff.

Arun Gupta:

And so there is no treatment available.

Arun Gupta:

Then there is stigma towards treatment.

Arun Gupta:

There, a lot of forces in this country that say you can substitute one drug for

Arun Gupta:

another drug, even though it's treat.

Arun Gupta:

And then I find doing this addiction medicine for the last 16 years.

Arun Gupta:

There's lot of stigma towards people in treatment.

Arun Gupta:

So I have saved hundreds and hundreds of lives year after year, month after month.

Arun Gupta:

But these people are, the grandparents may not know their work may not know

Arun Gupta:

their kids may not know, but they're alive and well, they Excel in their work

Arun Gupta:

and they're the nicest human beings.

Arun Gupta:

So those are the things that have to change.

Arun Gupta:

And the third problem, the government created.

Arun Gupta:

There's a treatment arm called Suboxone AR Buprenorphine.

Arun Gupta:

I do not know, you know, that 85% of my patients do well on this treatment,

Arun Gupta:

but they criminalized this in 2005 because some of it was on the street.

Arun Gupta:

CDC said 41 million people with substance use disorder are at risk

Arun Gupta:

only 2.4 million are in treatment.

Arun Gupta:

That means 39 million have no access to care.

Arun Gupta:

CDC also sets people, wait, listed for treatment, have very high mortality.

Arun Gupta:

So then they put this Devion control plan on the treatment arm that they never

Arun Gupta:

put on the Oxycontins and the morphine and the Opanas and the street dogs

Arun Gupta:

are not killing people left and right.

Arun Gupta:

I mean the death, it went up from 200 a day to 300.

Arun Gupta:

So those are the main problems that I see.

Arun Gupta:

And then another 500 new regulations that we passed in the last 20 years

Arun Gupta:

to curb the pills on the pill mills.

Arun Gupta:

And that makes doctors life difficult.

Arun Gupta:

For example, 1000 doctors have been shut down in this country because they were

Arun Gupta:

trying to comply with the regulations and then the government comes and finds out.

Arun Gupta:

You're doing too much in excess are not necessary.

Arun Gupta:

At the same time, we are letting the drug addicted people with

Arun Gupta:

criminal behavior off the hook.

Arun Gupta:

So at one end, we are letting these criminals off the

Arun Gupta:

hook to get in treatment.

Arun Gupta:

And then we are getting doctors into, get out of work and, and

Arun Gupta:

have face legal challenges.

Arun Gupta:

So the laws are not workable.

Arun Gupta:

They're not practical.

Natasha Miller:

Have you ever thought that you should write a book that you should

Natasha Miller:

write the story of your life to help other people learn from your experience?

Natasha Miller:

Please go to MemoirSherpa.com and learn how I can help you write, figure out your

Natasha Miller:

publishing path and market your story, your Memoir, to a best seller status.

Natasha Miller:

Are you going up to Capitol Hill and lobbying for this kind of thing?

Natasha Miller:

Is that part of your journey?

Arun Gupta:

Right now I'm a single voice, lobbying is not allowed.

Arun Gupta:

So all we could do is educate and advocate.

Arun Gupta:

I had forces in Washington.

Arun Gupta:

I hired people, but the policy makers, the government officials

Arun Gupta:

also Senate, they cannot do anything.

Arun Gupta:

I recently found out because I'm relatively new in this country, not

Arun Gupta:

very political, but the democratic party listens to bookings foundation

Arun Gupta:

and the Republican party listens to the heritage foundation.

Arun Gupta:

So two months ago, bookings foundation, after millions of dollars of research

Arun Gupta:

presented a document of the government on how to solve the upgrade crisis.

Arun Gupta:

I was sent that document it's based on studies from 2006 to 2014 data.

Arun Gupta:

That data is totally irrelevant.

Arun Gupta:

So if that kind of research.

Arun Gupta:

Is being provided to the government.

Arun Gupta:

Government is only going to make decisions based on what is said.

Arun Gupta:

So even though I had people trying to contact, I could talk

Arun Gupta:

to some staffers, but I could never reach the main politicians.

Arun Gupta:

Because they do not know what to do, even though I know my state representatives and

Arun Gupta:

stuff, I've given them a books that I've tried to ship more books to Washington,

Arun Gupta:

but it's not easy to get into that space.

Natasha Miller:

Do you have a band of other physicians that are along

Natasha Miller:

the likes of your mindset that you're pooling resources with?

Arun Gupta:

So only 1% of the physicians in this country know little bit

Arun Gupta:

about addiction medicine, and none of them are talking what I'm talking.

Arun Gupta:

So I'm a one man army and there is nobody behind me other than my close friends.

Natasha Miller:

And are these physicians opposed to your thinking or just

Natasha Miller:

not able to take the time or maybe they don't want to take the time to

Natasha Miller:

consider your stance and your approach?

Arun Gupta:

The physicians are very busy.

Arun Gupta:

If they have food on the table and the bills are paid, they generally

Arun Gupta:

don't care and they're afraid of bad consequences could happen.

Arun Gupta:

So everybody does their own work and go home.

Arun Gupta:

And, but if you look at the review on the books, you know,

Arun Gupta:

there may be a dozen and a half.

Arun Gupta:

Physicians have written very strongly about my position.

Arun Gupta:

Do physicians have time to read the book?

Arun Gupta:

Answer is not, do they have a desire to maybe.

Arun Gupta:

If people are not affected themselves, they may not be interested in doing that.

Arun Gupta:

And it's so easy to overlook.

Arun Gupta:

Like I said, I was in a Houston meeting, we there for three day status and then

Arun Gupta:

Monday, June four to sixth, and we had a booth for a addiction prevention

Arun Gupta:

or reaction group, and people will just pass by not wanting to talk to

Arun Gupta:

us, but if we stop them and say, "Hi, I'm-" so, and so "How are you Joan?"

Arun Gupta:

And tell us stories about all the bad things that have happened in

Arun Gupta:

the family and, and neighborhood and friends , but then they still had,

Arun Gupta:

before we started the conversation, they had no interest in that.

Arun Gupta:

So like you said, a lot of people,-

Natasha Miller:

You think that that's the stigma?

Arun Gupta:

That is that's the stigma.

Arun Gupta:

Yeah.

Natasha Miller:

Yeah.

Natasha Miller:

Wow.

Natasha Miller:

So you decided to write a book.

Natasha Miller:

Let's talk about the book writing process.

Natasha Miller:

Did you write it completely on your own?

Natasha Miller:

Did you have editors or coaches?

Natasha Miller:

How did you approach that?

Arun Gupta:

So once the bug was put into my head that I should write a book, I just

Arun Gupta:

started typing, one, I type one finger.

Arun Gupta:

And after hours work during lunch, before work in the morning, I'll have an idea.

Arun Gupta:

I'll research.

Arun Gupta:

I'll think I tapped about a thousand pages.

Arun Gupta:

I have no clear idea where it's going to go.

Arun Gupta:

And I knew that it was not workable.

Arun Gupta:

So I spent six months trying to find somebody to clean up my mess.

Arun Gupta:

And luckily I got a guy.

Arun Gupta:

Chris Manning is a English teacher in Lansing, Michigan.

Arun Gupta:

And so we were supposed to finish it up in six months, then COVID happened.

Arun Gupta:

And then he had four kids at home trying to teach on a new platform

Arun Gupta:

from home that doesn't work.

Arun Gupta:

So it took like a year and a half, 20 months.

Arun Gupta:

And towards the end he was burnt out and he says, "I

Arun Gupta:

can't do it last year anymore."

Arun Gupta:

And I ended up writing four new chapters because I knew without these four,

Arun Gupta:

two new chapters, the story is not complete because the major players in

Arun Gupta:

this situation, so no big publishers would, I couldn't reach anybody.

Arun Gupta:

So I was suggested to do a self-publishing.

Arun Gupta:

He recommended a company called Book Launchers, and they gave

Arun Gupta:

me a course, the course gave.

Arun Gupta:

Four weeks to clean up the act.

Arun Gupta:

And we did whatever.

Arun Gupta:

And then I went through more editors through them and then

Arun Gupta:

the process was moving very slow.

Arun Gupta:

Now I'm talking from April of last year to September of last year.

Arun Gupta:

So I have physician friends, I have professional people who want to read

Arun Gupta:

and edit and then suggest me things.

Arun Gupta:

The book launches are doing something.

Arun Gupta:

And my physician, friends and other professional people in my social

Arun Gupta:

circle are writing up at the same time and they can see each other.

Arun Gupta:

So this company got scared and said, we help you till here we are now

Arun Gupta:

going to take you to the finish line.

Arun Gupta:

You're gotta find somebody else.

Natasha Miller:

Yes.

Natasha Miller:

So book launchers said that.

Arun Gupta:

Book launches told me that.

Arun Gupta:

Yes, so I said, fine.

Arun Gupta:

I struggled for a month.

Arun Gupta:

I started having some board people on my board for the foundation.

Arun Gupta:

They helped me with dealing with the social media and book companies.

Arun Gupta:

And, you know, who's gonna make a cover what design, this and that stuff.

Arun Gupta:

And so we through another recommendation, somebody locally suggested a Lady

Arun Gupta:

Palm five and six and she was busy, but she said since she got recommended

Arun Gupta:

by so and so I'll look into it.

Arun Gupta:

So we said, she'll read in November and pass it on.

Arun Gupta:

And then we edit it a little bit more.

Arun Gupta:

And we went to the finish line and we published on February 14th.

Natasha Miller:

Congratulations.

Natasha Miller:

I know how much work it is and how much money it is and how much focus.

Natasha Miller:

And it's challenging.

Natasha Miller:

I published my book in March 22nd and wow.

Natasha Miller:

I didn't realize how much it would take out of me, but it

Natasha Miller:

was a great journey as well.

Natasha Miller:

So, but it's good that you've got this information out here.

Natasha Miller:

How are people reacting to it that have read it?

Natasha Miller:

Are people pushing it away?

Natasha Miller:

Are they saying this isn't right?

Natasha Miller:

Or are pharma companies that produce some of these drugs upset?

Natasha Miller:

Is there any backlash?

Arun Gupta:

No, I do not have backlash, but I have room for a lot of backlash

Arun Gupta:

because I questioned everybody that has made inappropriate wrong decisions.

Arun Gupta:

It could be the go of Michigan.

Arun Gupta:

It could be AMA, it could be licensing and regulation.

Arun Gupta:

It could be the regulations made by the federal government

Arun Gupta:

and the state government.

Arun Gupta:

So I questioned everybody in a nice way.

Arun Gupta:

So I know I could be even Purdue Pharma could come and get me.

Arun Gupta:

I mean, there are things in there that, for example, so Purdue

Arun Gupta:

Pharma is known for Oxycontin.

Arun Gupta:

They're not known publicly for Dilaudid.

Arun Gupta:

Dilaudid is the same medication is also made of Purdue Pharmaceutical.

Arun Gupta:

So what they did is they promoted in the hospital setting in the emergency room

Arun Gupta:

setting to give patients IV Dilaudid, and then the patients will come out

Arun Gupta:

and say, "Hey doc, we need something as strong as Dilaudid for our pain control."

Arun Gupta:

Look, the hospital gave it to us.

Arun Gupta:

You gotta give it to us or we gonna Sue you.

Arun Gupta:

So that is a missing link against Purdue, which I wrote in the book.

Arun Gupta:

Mm.

Arun Gupta:

So a lot of people can come and get me.

Arun Gupta:

I'll give you an example.

Arun Gupta:

I was, uh, referred to a board member of AMA.

Arun Gupta:

Two months ago and sky was-

Natasha Miller:

American medical association?

Arun Gupta:

Association.

Natasha Miller:

Yeah.

Arun Gupta:

Member of the board.

Arun Gupta:

Yes and he says, "Hey doc, I will position.

Arun Gupta:

And I will read the book and I'll get back with you."

Arun Gupta:

Listen, this's a chapter on AMA.

Arun Gupta:

This guy never called me back you know, the Michigan attorney journal came to

Arun Gupta:

my town two months ago to talk about how to disperse this drug money that

Arun Gupta:

they got from drug companies and stuff.

Arun Gupta:

34 million were to state of Michigan.

Arun Gupta:

So I gave her a book as a chapter, the Neurontin, and they gave APEN and

Arun Gupta:

they made it to schedule five drug in Michigan and made it very, very

Arun Gupta:

difficult for us to write patients, to get it very useful drug the federal

Arun Gupta:

government, doesn't say it's a narcotic.

Arun Gupta:

So it made life difficult for everybody.

Arun Gupta:

It did not reduce the overdose death,-

Natasha Miller:

Which drug was this?

Arun Gupta:

It's called Neurontin or Gabapentin.

Natasha Miller:

I know someone on Gabapentin and it was not

Natasha Miller:

a good situation for him, but everyone reacts differently to.

Arun Gupta:

Yeah, I had 90% of our patients were on Gabapentin, so

Arun Gupta:

we had to start cutting down, do drug testing, do routine office

Arun Gupta:

drug test as a test for Gabapentin.

Arun Gupta:

So we have to send out for a $1,500 test to see if the drug is there or not.

Arun Gupta:

I mean, it's unnecessary, what we call an academic field

Arun Gupta:

controversial or kneejerk reactions-

Natasha Miller:

right

Arun Gupta:

by the policy makers.

Natasha Miller:

Well, I would just like to say on behalf of the human

Natasha Miller:

condition, thank you for putting your time and your effort and your expertise

Natasha Miller:

into something that people are ignoring or just letting flow down the river.

Natasha Miller:

It's clear that there's a time and need for it, not just now but long ago.

Natasha Miller:

And you are sort of a pioneer.

Natasha Miller:

In the fight against it.

Natasha Miller:

So before we end the interview, is there anything else you wanna talk

Natasha Miller:

about that we didn't touch upon?

Arun Gupta:

So you were asking about how's the reaction with the public?

Arun Gupta:

Have you heard of a series called The Pharmacist?

Natasha Miller:

No.

Arun Gupta:

It came on Netflix two and a half years ago.

Arun Gupta:

Okay.

Arun Gupta:

It's a pharmacist guy.

Arun Gupta:

His name is Dan Schneider.

Arun Gupta:

His son got killed in a drug bad deal.

Arun Gupta:

In 1999, he became very concerned and he started videoing doctors and

Arun Gupta:

pharmacies, and all the paraphernalia went to the FBI hundreds and hundreds

Arun Gupta:

of time made all the recordings.

Arun Gupta:

So I had seen the serial before COVID happened.

Arun Gupta:

And my book came out and some newspaper interviews came and he sent me a message.

Arun Gupta:

This is Danny Schneider contact.

Arun Gupta:

I that name didn't ring a bell at that time, but I said, okay, I should call it.

Arun Gupta:

So I did, we talked for an hour at the end.

Arun Gupta:

He was not very happy with my position because it was today different than

Arun Gupta:

what his position was 20 years ago.

Arun Gupta:

But he read the book and he sent me a two page message and said,

Arun Gupta:

I understand your viewpoint.

Arun Gupta:

And he is in touch with lot of high end people like Beth Macy

Arun Gupta:

who wrote the sealed book for a that was on Hulu, the a Doc Sick.

Natasha Miller:

I've heard of that.

Arun Gupta:

And the guy who produced Danny Strong, he produced

Arun Gupta:

that movie serial, 8 part serial.

Arun Gupta:

So these kind of people are on my list of people that I talked to.

Arun Gupta:

I talked to Danny Schneider.

Arun Gupta:

Another lady that recently approached me is Dr.

Arun Gupta:

Susan Harrick.

Arun Gupta:

Her son died last year from the struggle with injuries and pain and addiction.

Arun Gupta:

And I had done an interview on Emily's Hope and she was invited to speak

Arun Gupta:

there and she heard my interview.

Arun Gupta:

And, so she's writing a book called Slow Dance With The Devil.

Arun Gupta:

But she's got connection at a financial level and the movie business.

Arun Gupta:

So she's looking to convert that into a movie and they ask me if I would

Arun Gupta:

help them advise on their project.

Arun Gupta:

So things are happening at a good level.

Arun Gupta:

I'm making connections and good people are connecting and together

Arun Gupta:

we will do something meaningful.

Arun Gupta:

It's gonna take more time, but that's all I can say.

Arun Gupta:

This is my project that I think is the biggest humanitarian and peace project.

Arun Gupta:

And I think the social groups, the media, the policy makers, doctors, and

Arun Gupta:

the insurance companies all need to get together with one mind and looking in

Arun Gupta:

one direction to solve this problem.

Arun Gupta:

And I've outlined that in my book very well.

Arun Gupta:

I did have two, three regrets that I was finishing the project

Arun Gupta:

that I may want to share one.

Arun Gupta:

I wanted to finish this book before COVID.

Arun Gupta:

But the book wouldn't have turned out to be this good.

Natasha Miller:

Right.

Arun Gupta:

So it, but at that time, 200 people were dying today.

Arun Gupta:

300 people are dying.

Arun Gupta:

So I do feel some burden on my chest.

Arun Gupta:

If the book would've come out earlier, we would've started this dialogue earlier.

Arun Gupta:

Maybe things would not be this bad.

Arun Gupta:

The second problem I did not pay attention to is the young kids that

Arun Gupta:

are left behind of the parents who are either incapacitated or dead.

Arun Gupta:

What's going to happen to them.

Arun Gupta:

That question was asked to me at Christmas and what I find now, I'm

Arun Gupta:

trying to find now that is going to explode in the next few years.

Arun Gupta:

The third thing that I had the study in my research is called the link

Arun Gupta:

between misconceptions of opioid use disorder and current policies.

Arun Gupta:

It was a research done by UUs U Penn in Pittsburgh.

Arun Gupta:

Over two years, time came out in twenty nineteen, a hundred

Arun Gupta:

and six people participated it.

Arun Gupta:

And they said a lot of good things that were not right or what was wrong.

Arun Gupta:

And that was my other regret that that study did not make it into my book.

Natasha Miller:

For more information, go to the show notes where

Natasha Miller:

you're listening to this podcast.

Natasha Miller:

Wanna know more about me go to my website, OfficialNatashaMiller.com.

Natasha Miller:

Thank you so much for listening.

Natasha Miller:

I hope you loved the show.

Natasha Miller:

If you did, please subscribe also, if you haven't done so yet,

Natasha Miller:

please leave a review where you're listening to this podcast now.

Natasha Miller:

I'm Natasha Miller and you've been listening to FASCINATING ENTREPRENUERS.

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