“The speaker events themselves were often a sham, as top prescribers and reps have admitted in court. Frequently, they consisted of a nice dinner with the sales rep and perhaps the doctor’s support staff and friends, but no other licensed prescriber in attendance to learn about the drug. One doctor did cocaine in the bathroom of a New York City restaurant at his own event, according to a federal indictment. Some prescribers were paid four figures to ‘speak’ to an audience of zero.” How do you move your company’s prescription opioids at a time when the dangers of using them is already widely known? You start with a kickback scheme. After all, “selling drugs is a relationship business.” A very interesting investigative report from Evan Hughes in the NYT Mag: The Pain Hustlers.