Chronic-pain bill aims to protect providers and patients

Chronic-pain bill aims to protect providers and patients | Health | unionleader.com – By Shawne K. Wickham New Hampshire Sunday News – Jan 2020

Finally, at least in Massachusetts, there are signs of push-back against all the inane and arbitrary opioid restrictions.

Senate Bill 546 calls for providers to “administer care sufficient to treat a patient’s chronic pain based on ongoing, objective evaluations of the patient without fear of reprimand or discipline.”

It also states that patient care and prescribing of medication, including opioid painkillers, should not be dictated by “pre-determined” guidelines.

This kind of logical reasoning is far too rare these days, but I take it as a hopeful sign that some folks are starting to wake up to the facts – facts that have been successfully buried by all the media-hype based on endlessly repeated PROPaganda. 

Chronic pain patients say… the drug epidemic involves illegal street drugs, not the prescription medications they depend on.

It’s not just patients who say this; data from the CDC itself show this.

At issue are federal and state prescribing guidelines adopted in recent years in response to the ongoing drug epidemic that has ravaged New Hampshire and other states.

Sen. John Reagan, R-Deerfield, said he sponsored SB546 at the request of a friend who suffers from a chronic pain syndrome. “She said you can’t get a doctor to prescribe enough painkillers,” he said.

This proves my point that only personal experience can make a person understand chronic pain. When our opioids are cut off our friends and loved ones suffer too because they experience our subsequent misery.

“This is an effort to specifically tell the doctors to take care of their pain patients,” Reagan said

Some patient advocates blame the CDC itself for their troubles, after the agency issued guidelines in 2016 that recommended limits on how opioid painkillers are prescribed.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services subsequently adopted new rules for prescribing such drugs, and that’s when patients in New Hampshire and elsewhere say their doctors started cutting them off their medications.

Despite the CDC’s efforts last year to clarify its guidance, Reagan said, “The doctors and the pharmacists are terrified of the government because they can take their livelihood away.”

“That’s what scared all the doctors off of prescribing,” he said. “And the patients suffered.”

But Sherman, who chairs the Senate Health and Human Services Committee, said he’s heard from a number of doctors “who previously would not have had any problem prescribing opioids and now they’re really gun-shy about it.”

The purpose of the state rules, he said, “was never to make it impossible for somebody to get the appropriate medicine to treat their chronic pain.”

“The goal was to make sure that every time somebody wrote a prescription that it was appropriate, and that the precautions were in place so that somebody who really was at high risk of addiction wasn’t just prescribed these willy-nilly, without any thought being given with it.”

Sherman said it may be time to re-write the state guidelines, “to be sure number

  1. one, that patients are getting the medications they really need and
  2. two, that providers are feeling that they can go ahead and prescribe without being under threat of some kind of reprimand as long as they’re doing their due diligence.”

This hasn’t happened yet, but I’m thrilled to see even the slightest bit of resistance to the absurd new prohibition rules that affect our medical care.

5 thoughts on “Chronic-pain bill aims to protect providers and patients

  1. Kathy C

    Massachusetts seems to be ahead of the curve on a lot of things. Unfortunately other states are still operating on misinformation, beliefs and misreported science. New Mexico has had a problem with heroin since the early nineties, and still has higher rates of overdose, suicide and despair. The state epidemiologist took draconian measures against pain patients, and physicians. Of course they refused to look at any data telling them that what they had done had any benefit at all. They set up a PDMP in 2011 and the death rate went up. Since then people on the so called opioid board, used their positions for marketing purposes. They enlisted some really big corporations that profited from all of this, to “educate children about opioids.”
    There is plenty of profit in marketing and public relations, besides these corporations are responsible, for our nations decline. They don’t pay any taxes, they pay the low wages and exploit their employees. The so called opioid crisis, was a real money maker for them all. They found that it was helpful with injured employees too, it ensured that they would not file insurance claims. The lies and propaganda in mass media, which they supported, blamed patients and doctors, instead of the huge corporations that got protected while opiates were “misplaced” from the supply chain.

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    1. Zyp Czyk Post author

      Anyone who can count could figure out that the number of illicit opioid pills on the streets weren’t just grandma’s leftovers. I don’t understand how everyone believed that ridiculous story because it’s always been obvious to me that all those pills were coming from the supply chain, not individual prescriptions.

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    1. Zyp Czyk Post author

      No – this was just the first step, but even writing such a bill for potentially passing is a step forward. I don’t have my hopes up about this specific bill, but at least it shows some progress in thinking.

      We need to have more politicians suffer pain and surgery without opioids – only then will they really understand. Considering the vast numbers of politicians, this should already be happening, but it might take a while before it builds up to a critical mass to overcome the current anti-opioid idiocy.

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