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The Opioid Crisis Is The Healthcare Crisis

Mar. 06, 2018 8:38 AM ETABC, CVS, ENDPQ, JNJ, MCK, MNK, PFE, TEVA, CAH, AMZN, BRK.A, BRK.B, JPM, CMG60 Comments
Rogier van Vlissingen profile picture
Rogier van Vlissingen


  • The opioid crisis as a national emergency is a red herring issue.
  • Not comprehending the opioid crisis as a symptom of the healthcare crisis ensures failure.
  • Understanding the opioid crisis as a symptom of a dysfunctional medical system is the key to a long-term fix.

Opioids start as a short-term fix, enabling the worker to stay on the job, but they also slow healing—and can even prevent it.
CEO's Guide to Restoring the American Dream: How to deliver world class healthcare to your employees for half the cost, by Dave Chase and Tom Emerick (2017)

There have been a few attempts here recently to highlight the investment aspect of the opioid crisis. Most of that risks focusing on short-term trading opportunities, not long-term investment strategies. The totally confused approach of government so far would seem to cast doubt on the chances for a clear long-term solution, yet there are a few indicators that real progress is possible and already underway, driven by both business, unions, municipalities and other entities.

In a very interesting piece by Marshall Gordon, Healthcare Companies Work to Ease the Opioid Crisis, he points to initiatives from CVS (CVS) among others in the area of managing the crisis. The most interesting part of his article is that he endeavors to look at the problem in an ESG-investing context, and specifically relates it to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGS), item 3, good health and well-being. That is the right way of looking at it, but I would suggest that analytically we need to dig a level deeper.

In an earlier article from a different author, there was an exploration of the immediate fall-out from an investment perspective. Valid as far as it goes, but more of a trading than an investing exploration in as much as there is no clear long-term analysis of what the solution is. Other articles have touched on specific roles by specific companies. We need to look at the structural issues however.

Our failing healthcare business

In their brilliant book, the CEO's Guide to Restoring the American Dream: How to

This article was written by

Rogier van Vlissingen profile picture
Consultant in energy efficiency, power quality, air quality, renewable energy retrofitting - moving energy from liabilities to assets. Passionate student of the business scene, particularly commodities, circular economy, currently not an active investor. Author, translator, blogger. Trading experience more commodities than stocks. Co-founder of BCM Industries, specializing in autologous regenerative organ tissues (using the patient's own DNA), including major soft-tissue organs, bone, cartilage and skin. Bronx Lead for Plant Pure Communities and active in Plant Powered Metro New York - DaBronx.

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