Tag Archives: politics

Lawmakers are addicted to bad opioid policy

Arizona lawmakers are addicted to bad opioid policy – The Arizona Republic – Dr. Jeffrey A. Singer

The governor of Arizona is calling on the Legislature this week to enact prescription limits as well as other bureaucratic intrusions into the doctor-patient relationship.

Such policies are nothing new: State lawmakers are addicted to the idea of restricting doctors from providing opioids to patients in pain.

This strategy is premised on a false narrative.   Continue reading


Patient Input to FDA Opioid Policy Committee

What is the Sound of One Hand Clapping? – National Pain Report – Feb 2018 – By Richard A Lawhern, Ph.D.

On January 30, 2018, I was one of ~40 speakers before an audience of over 200,  in public hearings of the US FDA Opioid Policy Steering Committee, at Silver Spring Md.  

The Committee is composed of eight FDA senior department heads and Center directors.  

For once, pain patients were allowed to participate, along with medical professional societies, healthcare technology corporations, and a few partisans intent on obstructing all access to opioid pain relievers.   Continue reading

The Politics of Pain

The Politics of Pain | Proto Magazine | Oct 02, 2015

A national pain strategy: Decades in arriving, tangled in an epidemic of painkiller abuse, will it ever emerge to help those who need it?

TERESA SHAFFER’S chronic back pain began 25 years ago, after she gave birth to her third child. It was so severe that she could barely get out of bed, and so began a frustrating odyssey from one physician to another.

Many were skeptical about her symptoms, and it took years before she got a definitive diagnosis—incurable, progressive osteoarthritis that had caused irreversible deterioration of the cartilage in her joints and the disks in her back.   Continue reading

Government disrupting doctor-patient relationship

COMMENTARY: Opioid ‘crisis’ leading government to disrupt doctor-patient relationship – Las Vegas Review-Journal – By Josh Bloom Special to the Review-Journal – November 11, 2017

Of the many horrors that are being inflicted upon this country by opioid drugs, perhaps none is worse than one that is not making headlines.

Federal and state agencies have inserted themselves into the doctor-patient relationship like never before.

Our government is taking prescription pads out of the hands of physicians and dictating what drugs, doses and the number of pain medications that they may prescribe for their patients. This is a chilling precedent.   Continue reading

Alliance for the Treatment of Intractable Pain (ATIP)

Together with several of his colleagues in the battle for pain patients’ rights, Richard “Red” Lawhern, Ph.D. recently unveiled a new organization,

Alliance for the Treatment of Intractable Pain (ATIP)
ATIP on Facebook

This is a group of and for people willing to take an active part in changing the rules about pain treatment in this country, starting with lobbying to reject/repeal/replace the unscientific and biased CDC Opioid Prescribing Guideline. 

If you’re looking for a way to make your voice heard, ATIP can help you channel it effectively.  Continue reading

Head in the sand about opioid crisis

America has to get its head out of the sand for the opioid epidemic by Brooke M. Feldman, MSW Candidate, University of Pennsylvania, Social justice activist – Oct 2017

America has a long history of rewriting its own history. While this practice is sadly nothing new, perhaps one of the greatest real time showings of it in my lifetime has been the false narrative being spread like wildfire around the “opioid epidemic.”

It goes something like this:

“Johnny is from a white middle class community. He had everything going for him…Johnny was prescribed narcotic pain medication by an irresponsible doctor peddling a nefarious pharmaceutical company’s wares. Unknowingly, Johnny got hooked and eventually moved onto using heroin. ”   Continue reading

DEA Raids Dr. Forest Tennant’s Pain Clinic

DEA Raids Dr. Forest Tennant’s Pain Clinic Pain News Network  – November 16, 2017 By Pat Anson, Editor

Agents with the Drug Enforcement Administration have raided the offices and home of Dr. Forest Tennant, a prominent California pain physician, confiscating patient records, appointment books and financial documents.

In a lengthy search warrant, the DEA alleges that Tennant prescribed such high doses of opioid pain medication that his patients must be selling them.

So, the DEA got a search warrant based on their assumptions about his patients’ medical needs and their assumptions about what his patients are doing with their medication – no proof, no evidence, just assumptions.  Continue reading

‘Opiophobia’ Leaves Millions Dying in Chronic Pain

‘Opiophobia’ Leaves Millions Dying in Chronic Pain — Pain News Network – October 13, 2017 – By Pat Anson, Editor

More than 25 million people – most of them poor and living in developing countries – die each year in severe pain because they have little or no access to morphine and other painkillers, according to a new report.

A special commission created by The Lancet medical journal looked at pain care around the world and found major gaps in the availability of opioid pain medication.

While opioid analgesics are relatively available in the United States and Canada, patients in many parts of the world have no access to them. In addition to the 25 million who die in pain, the commission estimated that another 35 million live with chronic pain that is untreated.  Continue reading

Opioids: Politicians Should Not Play Doctor

Opioids: Politicians Should Not Play Doctor | National Review | by ANDREW STUTTAFORD August 19, 2017

This is significant because the National Review is a “leading conservative magazine and website covering news, politics, current events, and culture with detailed analysis and commentary.”

This article shows the back-and-forth over opioids, with rational minds trying to overcome the biased and erroneous assumptions of government agencies trying to control the so-called “opioid crisis”.

As the New York Times reported, the FDA explained: Trying to stem the scourge of prescription drug abuse, an advisory panel of experts to the Food and Drug Administration voted on Friday to toughen the restrictions on painkillers like Vicodin that contain hydrocodone, the most widely prescribed drugs in the country. Continue reading

Twenty “Pain” Questions to Ask Political Candidates

Twenty Questions to Ask Political Candidates –  August 26, 2017, by Lynn Webster, M.D.

These are great questions to ask yourself too – here are just a few of my favorites:

Here are 20 questions that every candidate should be able to answer to your satisfaction. You can use these questions as a guide to grade the individuals.

  1. What is the difference between physical dependence and addiction or an opioid use disorder?
  2. How many people commit suicide annually due in part to chronic pain?
  3. What percentage of opioid-associated overdoses involve illegal opioids?
  4. Does prescribing opioids after surgery usually lead to addiction?