In New England Pro Patient Pain Legislation Under Consideration

In New England Pro Patient Pain Legislation Under Consideration

A couple of pro-pain patients’ bills are under consideration in two New England states.

We reported recently on the bill Claudia Merandi has been promoting—one that passed the State House late last year and look promising to pass both houses this year.

Here’s a story we did on it last year.

Now In New Hampshire, a small group of chronic pain patient advocates have helped a state legislator who drafted a bill that advocates says will protect chronic pain patients — and the doctors who care for them.

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.

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.

At issue are both federal and New Hampshire prescribing guidelines adopted in recent years in response to a concern about overuse of opioid medication. The CDC Guideline and parallel law enforcement action by the Drug Enforcement Administration have resulted in what chronic pain patient advocates believe is an overreaction—and that patients who have depended upon responsible use op opioid medication over an extended period of time to address their chronic pain.

As one of the New Hampshire advocates shared with us (without attribution), “The fact we are a small state actually helps us. We were a small and focused group and were able to get the ear of a sympathetic state legislator who quickly understood the problem the prescribing guidelines have created.”

As the National Pain Report has argued over the past several years, there is no federal pain policy, but rather at least 51 of them (representing each state and the District of Columbia)

The fact that advocates in these two states have been able to introduce this type of legislation is an example for people in other states to get to work at the policy level.

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Authored by: Ed Coghlan

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Lisa Bennett

My pain specialist of 14 years has begun to be panicked. I’ve been involuntarily tapered 4 times, but only had difficulty with the last 2. Instead of thinking I might be having trouble because I’m in pain, under-medicated, he’s telling me I’m a bad patient. I’ve had over 25 surgeries, was hit by a car as a pedestrian, am disabled, & had a spotless record with my pain management for 14 years! I am terrified. If I try to advocate for myself, he gets angry. He’s told me he’s been ordered to cut his patients by 30%. I don’t know who has ordered this. But I do know this: I can no longer work, I have trouble functioning through the pain, & now I’m being treated badly. What do I do?!

Deb

I have severe degenerative bone disease, shingles that never end, neuropathy, lupus, fibromyalgia, trigeminal nuralgia, bolts, plates and a six inch rod in neck, 11 pins in jaw, torn left rotator cuff, volvadynia, and several other issues. And to top it off, I now have high blood pressure due to the forced cut to my medication. I did not agree to the cut and as a matter of fact, did not know it until it happened. But, the doctor noted in my records that we spoke about it when in fact we had not! I have never in over 20 years abused my medication. I used to be on a level that gave me enough relief that I could be apart of life. I worked, volunteered, was a good friend, wife, mother…..I am now so under medicated that I only survive! Not living just surviving! I really didn’t understand how pain whether emotional or physical could be so bad that someone felt the best option would be to take their own life,
I do now. How sad we have come to the point of no longer being trusted to run our own lives that government think they know what’s best for us.

Matthew

I have chronic back and neck pain and it is getting worse. I lost my dr. And was forced to go to a methadone clinic because I couldn’t take the withdrawals and pain. Most people think that only people who abuse their meds go through withdrawals but that’s not true. You get dependent on your medication for pain and physically dependent. So when you get your meds taken away you have to deal with your regular pain and the withdrawal too. I couldn’t take it. But the methadone doesn’t really help me. I only get one dose a day which only last for about 4 hours but enough then it doesn’t help. I feel so hopeless. Not only do i have to suffer with chronic pain but even if I could find a dr i would probably be labeled as a junkie because I go to the methadone clinic and will be turned away. I don’t know how much more i can take. My pain keeps getting worse. I would rather someone just shot me and put me out of my misery instead of living in this constant torment.

Mary W.

Martha, you can Google search for the NH bill. Congrats to the bill sponsor and NH constituents who took this step.

I am also somebody who had their opioid Rx meds forcibly reduced. My neck injury is hurting this morning – I have one more day’s worth of meds until I see my pain specialist on Friday morning.

Martha, perhaps you should consider working with a pain specialist AND your PCP. Dr. Thomas Kline MD from Raleigh NC discusses ICD diagnosis codes, methodology for clinicians to properly document injury and degenerative conditions contributing to intractable pain in patients’ charts.

And perhaps yes….these agencies may be trying to “do away with the infirm and disabled”. It happened before and during WW2. It could happen again (here).

Martha

Is there a way to get a copy of the Bill submitted in NH? Perhaps if we submit that to all Senators, the CDC, FDA, DEA AND NIH….with identical language, and flood those Gov’t offices with phone calls…??? There has to be a way to do ‘No Harm’ to patients. This is truly criminal. I had to bother my PCP today, yet AGAIN…to ask her to AGAIN call the Insurance Pharm. Benefits for a Pre-Auth. for a generic pain med, yes, an opiate. This will be the 5th or 6th time she is being forced to do this in 2 yrs. Ridiculous. This is wasting EVERYONE’S time, and my energy – of which I have precious little each day. I am far from a “Conspiracy Theorist” – however, I am starting to feel like they ( CDC, DEA,etc.) are simply trying to kill us off. We, with intractable pain – are hard pressed to fight for ourselves because of under-treated pain & exhaustion.
God help us all.

Yes I have ” Chronic”Pain.My lower back & mid back are also desinigrating. Now. Do you think maybe that’s why I have 24- 365 days of pain also!?! I don’t like the word Chronic Pain. There IS a reason. These med regulating ppl clump us together. Another thing I really don’t like. My doc is good. But please CDC& DEA don’t make us all the same. Are is as different as we are. I wish they would stop & learn this. Are pain is not all the same. And we should be on the medication that helps us, not just Mr.G feels well on it. So many things need to be discussed. Im 61. Maybe what I take makes Mr. G sick. Before I got what helped” me” I brought back, Opana,Morphine,and Oxycontin. The last med my Doc was surprised. Nobody brings these back. I told him give me back my others I’ve been on for yrs. The old saying; if its not broke,don’t (try) to fix it. Who feels Im right out there? You know what Im talking about. Peace. And I honestly hope you feel a little better. I never say totally better, cause we all know little, which is a good day, is better than crying all day which I know. happens to you. God bless each of us. Its damn hard to get dressed before 2. We struggle on. We R tough!!!!!!
Elyce in Pa. —yes, my mid side L back is killing me. Last text.

Debbie Nickels Heck, MD

I think this is all just plain ridiculous. Before the “Opioid Death Myths,” there WEREN’T state laws tying the hands of Drs to practice what they’d been trained to do in the first place. REVOKING the ridiculous laws PASSED would solve the problem without having to have legislators determine how to write new ones. Just REVOKE bad legislation which should NEVER have been written in a KNEE JERK fashion originally. The stroke of pens by Governors of ALL states to reverse the idioiocy BY ALL state legislatures would EASILY resolve the problems they incurred. It’s FAR too SIMPLE a solution for any state to consider.

Nana

She should have said” You often cannot even be admitted to a doctors practice if you have taken or need pain medications.

Laurie

This is hopeful for me, who sees little hope for a return to sanity in this country!
If we can open a crack in this hysteria, it will help us all. Otherwise, we will not see a return of pain treatment in my lifetime.
Now, let’s get some SANE people into government, OK?

Vicky

Does anyone know who to complain to in Kansas about having my weak opioid recertified? I have begun a complaint with our insurance commissioner. I am simply wanting to continue my career, being able to work, and no interest in getting high. I’m so tired of the hassles and insolent pharmacy techs lecturing me. Wish I’d live long enough to see what medications they may need as they age.

HOWARD HILL

I have been electrocuted by 480 volts, damaged pituitary glands, vocal cords. Fell 25 ft to concrete floor. I have under went 8 surgeries, at times my chronic back pain is so severe can not even get out of bed for the pain.Its constant.I had nerve damage also from electrocution. When I get pain meds now its as I’m a addict
Treated that way at doctors and pharmacy. I have severe anxiety to make it even worse Try to get meds for anxiety and chronic pain. I HAVE BEEN HOSPITALIZED TWICE FROM BEING TAKEN OFF ANXIETY MEDS. RESULTING IN SEIZURES.
IT EITHER PAIN RELIEF, ARE ANXIETY RELIEF, ALREADY HAVE STINTS FOR ARTIES, pins an bolts in back
HAVE AORTIC ANEURYSM ALSO, THIS IS CLOSE TO DEATH SOON AS LAST ANXIETY MEDS ARE GONE, BP WILL INCREASE TO 255/ 119/ 129. THIS MAY BE MY LAST REPLY HURTING SO BADLY, ALL THE TIME ,,NOW ANXIETY WILL KILL ME, FROM NOT BEING ABLE TO RECEIVE MEDS, DOCTORS TOLD ME I WOULD HAVE TO TAKE REST OF MY LIFE.
I GUESS AT 65 THEY DECIDE WHEN YOU DIE TOO. MY DOCTOR CARES BUT HIS REPLY MY HANDS ARE TIED. INSURANCE COMPANIES HAVE LOBBIED TO START CRISIS, WHEN BOG PHARMACEUTICALS RAISED PRICES, I WAS TAKING 2 OPANA A DAY, WHICH WAS 1800 A MONTH.NOW ALL I RECIEVE COST 45 A MONTH
DO THE MATH SEE IF YOU CAN’T SEE WHY THE LIES OF OPIOIDS STARTED,PEOPLE ARE DYING AND ITS NOT BECAUSE OF TAKING OPIOIDS IT PLAINLY BECAUSE THEY CAN’T, EVERY DEATH. FROM ILLICIT DRUGS ARE BEING CALLED OPIOID DEATHS, WHY DO WE 50 MILLION TOLERATE THIS
VOTE VOTE
.

Bradley Bill Parker

UNDER TREATED and UNTREATED HIGH IMPACT PAIN DOES KILL, ask any medical doctor at the top research hospitals they’ll explain how it occurs in frightening catastrophic details for you SOBs at the DEA to choke on.
MEDICAL DOCTOR’S Out There, and There Associated HOSPITALS Involved WHO Practice Indigent Poor PATIENT ABANDONMENT ! You’ll Get Your WHAT FOR ! if not here on Earth, THEN WITH GOD YHVH IN HIS HEAVENLY KINGDOM.
HE’S KING, HIS DOMAIN as it is written.
Thanks for Sharing Your Thoughts and Questions, Sincerely yours Mr Bradley Bill Parker ✝️⛹️🤸 🏀🤾

Debby Ramundo

Thank God! It’s about time. I had surgery last week on top of severe under treated chronic pain. The surgeon wanted to order a few days of increased meds but the PA did everything possible to prevent it. She even called my Primary who already won’t give me enough meds. She went so far as to lie to the surgeon and tell him the pharmacy wouldn’t fill it!! How dare she!! Let someone carve her up and deny her pain meds. We’ve created monsters. 😢

Jane

Thank You For Being Fearless!!! I am no longer a chronic pain suffer however I can assure every legislator and doctor that without pain medicine for three years I would not be walking!!! If I broke my neck today and got a third degree burn which took off the front of my thigh I Could Not Have gone threw the three years of intense physical therapy I had to endure! This issue is so close to my heart and if one state will pass legislation I will be going to the state capital in Louisiana and see what one person can do! I grieve for everyone of you that has to go through pain 24/7 and then treated like a felon IF you can find a pain management doctor!

Holly

I was FORCED to go to a methadone clinic. Not one bit of care or concern from my pain Dr.

Damn them all to hell!

Thomas Wayne Kidd

This would be great if we can get people to actually do this. That you very much.

Gail Honadle

It is NOT chronic pain, it is INTRACTABLE PAIN. NEVER LETS UP 24/7/365 AND CAN KILL.