Trending News Today: DEA Holds Pharmacies Accountable for Dispensing Opioids

Top news of the day from across the health care landscape.

In its company earnings report, Pfizer announced new investment plans in light of the recent GOP tax law, The Hill reported. As a result of the law, the manufacturer said it generated an additional $11 billion in 2017. The manufacturer disclosed it will invest $5 billion over the next 5 years, while also granting $100 million in bonuses for its employees, according to the article. Pfizer also noted it donated $200 million to its charity.

Telehealth providers may be able to break into the Medicare industry after years of lobbying, Reuters reported. Four bills have been introduced that would remove barriers that prohibited Medicare from reimbursing telehealth services, according to Reuters. Currently, telehealth spending cannot be charged across state lines and Medicare also does not recognize consultations that do not happen in-person, according to the article. Many private insurers have already started implementing telehealth in hopes of saving money.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced yesterday that the DEA will crack down on pharmacies and prescribers to escalate the fight against the opioid epidemic, according to The Hill. The agency plans to launch a nationwide investigation into health care providers who issued a significant number of opioid prescriptions. The goal of this plan is to arrest and convict pharmacists and prescribers to reduce the number of opioids being prescribed, according to the article.