Opioid Painkiller Hashtags Blocked on Instagram

Hashtags using the names of prescription opioids have been blocked on Instagam, which is owned by Facebook.

The action against hashtags such as #fentanyl, #oxycontin, #opioids came just days after U.S. Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said social media companies were not doing enough to prevent their sites from being used to sell prescription opioid painkillers, CBS News reported.

The FDA has found offers to buy opioids on numerous social media sites, including Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Reddit, according to Gottlieb.

He said the FDA will invite the CEOs of major internet companies to a summit on the tech industry's role in the U.S. opioid crisis, CBS reported.

"I know that internet firms are reluctant to cross a threshold where they could find themselves taking on a broader policing role," Gottlieb said. "But these are insidious threats being propagated on these web platforms."

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