Survey: 100 Chronic Pain Patients Needed

Survey: 100 Chronic Pain Patients Needed

By Ed Coghlan.

When over 100 California thought-leaders and luminaries in pain management (physicians, payers, administrators, policy makers, etc.) gather in Los Angeles November 2nd to develop a California Pain Strategy, they need some guidance.

That’s why they are asking the National Pain Report readers to help shape the discussion.

The group seeks to localize key recommendations from the National Institutes of Health’s National Pain Strategy in the Golden State. Then they hope that this strategy cannot only be implemented in California, but it will be a guide for other states.

To do that, they must understand what the chronic pain community thinks the big issues are.

To do that, they are asking for our readers to complete a short survey.

Please do that here.

Also, understand that if you try to fill out the survey and it won’t let you, it means we have reached the 100 persons limit the California leaders have asked.

If you want to add your opinion in the commentary section, please do. We are interested in your comment always, but especially on the topic of what a real comprehensive pain strategy should look like.

It’s easy to say, we need more access to pain medication—and many of you will (understandably).

But what else should be done around the issues of more physician training, patient and physician education, insurance coverage, alternative treatments and technologies or other issues that matter to you.

We really want to know.

The National Pain Strategy was adopted a couple of years ago, but its implementation has been, quite frankly, very slow in coming.

Many chronic pain physicians, advocates and patients believe the National Pain Strategy is the right recipe for dealing with chronic pain and that efforts to implement it, even at the state level, make good sense for the chronic pain patients and their loved ones.

The idea in California is that the nation’s largest state might be an example for other states and the federal government to follow.

That’s what Friday’s session in Los Angeles is designed to start—or resume:

A real conversation about chronic pain.

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Authored by: Ed Coghlan

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Heather

The only reason I chose unrestricted access to medication.and dosage is because I feel the dose limitations are arbitrary. I welcome other types of treatment and was interested in the integrative approach. People not having access to medication is the immediate emergency. It is a real shame because if we were not in crisis with patients losing access to treatment and higher suicide rates, then I could answer the survey differently. Because what is happening is so extreme and neglectful, I feel options to move forward with effective care is limited by immediate needs.

Drucella Williams

People are under the impression that this is only for California and the survey is closed….

elle ess

i’d love to see alternative/holistic complements covered by insurance. this isn’t a “one size fits all” conversation. i support compassionate monitoring, open dialogue, availability + ease for those who have found success with their treatment pharmacologically… life with severe, chronic pain is challenging enough without battles over access to pain relief. i also advocate for alternative/holistic options that allow me degrees of relief to be routinely incorporated by the medical community + covered by insurance or other subsidy.

It really upset me that people like my self have to suffer .im 62 years old have ra and bad knees i cant have surgery due to my health my pain meds are also being cut and tooken away also because my dr is scared its not fare to me or anyone else who has chronic pain .i also have been on my meds for 20 years .never had a issue ..this is so unfair to us they need to leave dr alone let them make that choice .i dont see them stoping the st drugs no i dont why cause they get a kick back out of it right go after china stop the fentynal from coming over here and your problem will be solved im sorry but i dont have no feelings for the people who od cause they did it to their self they knew what they were doing . its not my fault .but like someone else said we are being punished for it .

Im 39 years old i have been on my pain meds for 20 years i have ra gout graves 3 hernsited disc in lower back. It is not fair to me that my meds have been cut and now i might lose them all together.and for the people who are saying opioids are not good long term have no clue what they are talking about because without my meds i would be dead …the pain meds are not the problem its the st drugs herion and fentynal …why dont they go after china and stop the fentynal from coming in then u will see the diffence .i dont understand why they keep blaming the pain pills for overdoses when dr are not even writing scripts anymore there to scared to ..i think the govermnent and the cdc and the dea need to leave chronic pain people alone its not our fault that some dumb ass kid ods .im sorry but im tired of being punished when i have not done anything wrong for 20 years i have passed pee tests and every pill count but my meds are still be cut .its not fare .i dont even know why im writing this because they dont care about us .. Nope they dont .nothing we say will change their minds or how they think about us to them we are just junkies who dont need it ..i hope one day all them need the meds and they cant get them like i cant then they will see how i feel or when they have to watch their love one suffer in pain…sad very sad that this is not a free country anymore …we should not have to suffer because of what other people are doing and to tell me i dont need them because i dont have cancer is sad .i have lung problems bad and all my other health problems are bad but i dont need them yeah ok

Rich Reifsnyder

Hello,Since the 2016 Opiod Guidelines started there are more suicides,and deaths of us Intractable Chronic Pain Patients and Veterans from being abandoned or our pain medications being drastically reduced by the CDC/FDA/DEA,our new “Doctors.The numbers of Suicides and other Deaths related to Pain Patients being cutoff or severely under prescribed Opiod Medication is far higher then OD Deaths by CPP,S with a legitimate prescription for Opiod Medication taken properly.Why isn’t the CDC looking into the thousands of suicides and tremendous harm these Guidelines caused millions of Veterans and Intractable Chronic Pain Patients?Millions of us Vote Soon,Google and see which politicians stuck up for us,you won’t find many except that form letter on abortion or Addiction that we received when we wrote to them for help!I live in Southern New Jersey and none of these Politicians care for me or millions of us in this country,but care for Heroin Addicts while we suffer for years! Very Sad Make America Great Again My Ass

Camilla Cracchiolo, RN

I’m both an RN and a chronic pain patient. I have fibromyalgia and disk degeneration in my back. I don’t need opiates often, but when I need them, I *really* need them. In one question you had lumped alternative medicine stuff like acupuncture and homeopathy in with massage. I think the first two don’t work, but massage can be very effective in certain kinds of pain disorders involving muscle spasm. I didn’t pick that question as one of my top five because of this (we need effective medicine, not stupid acupuncture or homeopathy!) but I would really like to see insurance companies pay for massage as a maintenance pain therapy. Right now you have to be continually improving on any physical therapy or insurance won’t cover it. Plus they treat it like it’s made of gold and won’t let you get very much of it. This should change, especially if the state is going to make it hard for us to get effective pain meds.

Some of the things I see being said are insane. Like not giving any opiates after major abdominal surgery and forcing patients to take only Tylenol, on the grounds opiates are not effective after surgery. Huh? Dream on! Opiates are far more effective than just Tylenol and denying them after major surgery is just cruel.

The state should also track how many chronic pain patients are killing themselves because of being denied effective medication. I am hearing about cases. Opiate induced overdoses are not the only things causing deaths here and chronic pain patients lives are just as important as those who overdose. And the state should also track just how many of those overdoses are happening in people forced off effective pain meds and into the illegal markets. You don’t even know if the war on opiates is actually saving lives if you don’t know how many deaths could have been avoided by keeping pain patients on their needs!

Karl

I have been attacked by my HMO all year. I have been on opioids for 13 years for horrible back pain. I have tried two different surgeries and all I got was numbness and burning in my feet and still horrible back pain. I am in a Safety Sensitive Job and it requires random drug tests and verification from my Dr that paIn meds do not effect my cognitive abilities. My primary care Dr has done that for 13 years. Stating this year my HMO forced me into their pain management Clinic. The very first appointment this Dr cut my prescription by 33%. I tried explaining my situation to her. She refused to listen and told me to go on disability. I explained disability pays $2500 a month, I make $12,000 a month. I am a fully functioning tax paying memeber of Society that is having my ability to work taken away from me by my own HMO!! Every appointment they refuse to document my high blood pressure from the pain. They make me sit there and breathe and meditate to get my blood pressure down before they will document it.
I have never had to use FMLA in 13 years or missed a single day of work because of my back pain. Now I am missing a few days a month due to pain. Now I have to file for FMLA to keep from being fired for not being dependable. I have been pulled over by the police several times late at night since I work late and not once have the police suspected I was impaired I just drive too fast. I have filed a complaint with the California State Agency over this issue and we are in the IME process right now. The HMO also reduced me from a 30 day supply to a 28 day supply in violation of the contract with my Company. It makes it very difficult to plan my vacations and work around this restrictive policy. They also charge the same price saving them 6% on every prescription which adds up when you have thousands of patients. I have tried every therapy available and the only thing that works is my long acting opioid medication. I can’t use illegal drugs and I don’t drink alcohol.

My chronic pain is due to degenerative spinal disease. The way I manage my pain is through a comprehensive set of natural Therapies. This includes maintaining a healthy diet, plenty of water, exercise especially focusing on proper technique and core muscles, yoga and neutral posture, and natural botanicals, mainly kratom.

ABrwn

So with the controversy around opiods and government. I believe that doctors are scared just as much as we are. They are faced with jail time, fines and their license to practice medicine. I am not giving them an excuse but maybe a reason to fight the system and do what they promised when they took the Hippocratic Oath to do no harm!!!! Yet i have seen with my own eyes and I have been forced off myself. I am living on kratom to manage the pain and after reading about this as pain reliever i am no sure this is any safer. What’s even more horrifying.. I don’t consider myself that bad. I have heard of Drs taking patients that have MS and their meds have been cut in half talking less than what I had. What they are creating are those people who are getting what they need from the streets. HEROIN IS everywhere, aren’t the Drs even concerned that because they caved in to the gov’t that they have created an even bigger epidemic, by pushing people to the streets. How many have already died. Yes we have drug seekers, but that is much needed education, and training to recognize the drug addicts. Guess what all life matters. Balance it, don’t kick it off a cliff and yell “I hope you make it.” Have a plan and teach Drs, staff what to look for. I was injured and have RA. Please take ignorance out of it. Where is your compassion for life? Is your pocketbook more than my life, it sure looks and feels like you have kicked me and left me on the side of the road. Thats ok, when you walk a mile in my shoes I hope you are treated as I was. You as politicians, and the CDC, and Pharmas that have decided that my quality of life doesn’t matter. I pray that you or your family don’t suffer. Oh thats right! They won’t because it’s my blood, sweat, and tears. NOT YOURS!

Randy

So far to my knowledge, there has not been a comprehensive discussion with the all of the the key participants in the so called Opiod Crisis. Certainly the lions share of the commentary on his subject has centered around Oipiod deaths by overdose… The first issue with the opiod death by overdose issue is that the death of say, even thirty thousand citizens per year (ball park figure 2016-17) in the US, is in its self problematic for both the families of those killed as well as our society as a whole…
So to what extent do you limit the use of (perscribed) opiods to the hundreds of thousand or million’s of people that have to deal with debilitating pain of which perscribed opiods are the only treatment that works and in turn allowing chronic pain patient’s to live a somewhat normal life?
Evidently it is whatever the bureaucrats decide!?!

As a chronic pain sufferer/patient myself, do to and from a necessary eight (8) back surgeries (three spinal fusion’s) that allow me to stand and walk somewhat,
I feel as if the entire world has NO idea what my pain is like and yet suddenly the government is getting ready to take away the only thing that allows me to put my socks and underwear on in the morning…

Now that perscribed opioids have been declared the scurge of society, what are we chronic pain sufferer’s supposed to do? Not only is the government going to take away my quality of life at 59 years old but they have the whole world convinced that I (we) are some part of a huge opiod addiction/overdose death problem in America… Who the hell is fueling this faults narrative?
I will say this, if the death rate of CHRONIC PAIN patients via perscription opiods is enough that doctors have to stop prescribing it, you will see far more deaths by suicide for chronic pain sufferer’s from other methods and the suicide rate will rise significantly in my opinion.

I could go on but what’s the use. I guess we’ll just have to live with the pain.?!?

Stephanie Frink

I need an alternative to opoids because they give me migraines. I can’t have a surgery because the pain meds will cause as much if not more pain than the surgery itself.

Laura Thomson

I think anyone that gets dionosed with CRPS should have access to pain management doctors for the very reason to get injections that are very important early on with physical therapy to have a chance to beat the disease.

Kim

Patients with chronic pain who receive pain medications are not the ones over dosing. The addicts don’t care about laws, they will find a way to get their drug. They will make it themselves, buy it on internet. What really bothers me is…why does the government think they need to stop you from over dosing. When are we going to make people accountable for their own actions. In the mean time the people in real pain are being ignored by our physicians, which sounds a lot like patient negligence!!

After receiving this National Pain Reports daily post via my email I did take the short survey, I believe I was able to complete the survey, leave a comment within one of the questions and successfully submit. Unfortunately I forgot to take any screenshots of my answers or comment.

Jill

I totally agree with Lina’s opinion. I also wish more emphasis would be put on the the connection between pain and depression. A good deal is written regarding using mindfulness to ease pain. Opioids allows function and purpose. Lack of function brings depression and despair to the life of CPP. Opioids bring us relief even if its minimal keeping our minds in a better state. Opioids have been so maligned is ridiculous. They do what they are meant to do.

As a pelvic pain sufferer I’m so tired of being tortured when opiates are effective pain reducers for me!

annie Noordhof

What about those of us that have been cut off from all pain medication and told ” You don’t have cancer and therefore you no longer can be on Morphine for your pain” . Yet I can’t take any other pain medication even the gabapentin or lyrica because of the side affects. Even ibuprofen isn’t an option for me because of my stomach issues. So what else am I supposed to do to help with this awful pain. I have no quality of life anymore. And then they wonder why the suicide rate is going up!
What other choice is left…
Signed,
Broken in Wisconsin

Cindy Deim

I think it’s very important to understand that the “epidemic” has been perpetrated by people either using illegal drugs ( Heroin, Fentanyl) or stealing prescription from someone with a prescription are the problem.
People who have chronic pain are not the problem. How else can we say this and have people pay attention? People in chronic pain have been treated like pariahs, when will this end. We are not bad people because we are sick.

Jul

That was a good survey, if it helps to quell the Government OVERREACH and the false narrative that makes OPIATES a horrible therapy.
I am in agreement with LINA. She makes sense of a not so difficult “problem”. Thank you.

Jill Ursich

We need control of our own individual pai, not told what to take n that’s it! We have a right to be able to get out of bed everyday n n
Be reductive.. Not in pain n worthless be the govt said we r not to be given what works for us responsible Citizens. 18 yrs n no problems with pain medication ever, until they took it away from me. I am sick in bed since July. totally worthless. It took me yrs to get pain manageable with the meds I had, n now backsliding fast.. help n listen to each case please..I need proper treatment my medication back n of for.. Help

Jessica

True pain patients need:
1) Access to any and all medications that help (this includes opioid and non opioid – like for me injectable anti-inflammatory Ketoralac reduces my opioid dose by a half.

2) Remove the stigma!! There needs to be a HUGE WIDESPREAD campaign including health care providers and the public that just because you are on opioid doesn’t automatically make you an addict.

3) complimentary treatments like chiropractice, massage, acupuncture and CRANIAL SACRAL therapy and others need to be accessible financially for chronic pain patients who usually don’t have a lot of money. These treatments are critical for quality of life and reducing the need for medications (which trust me, none of us want to be on)

4) Empathy, empathy empathy! Emotional support for the CPP and for their caregivers. It’s a hard life – we ALL need support.

5) doctors ONLY (and patients) need to make the decisions on medicines, and not have to be worried about the DEA or being sued.

6) Gentic testing. Something like 80% of people don’t metabolize opioids the “average” way (and alsp dont metabolize other medications correctly either) and therefore need higher doses to feel the affects yet also monitor toxicity.

7) Patients need to legally (and properly informed) have a right to choose “dangerous drugs” to improve their quality of life.

8) chronic severe pain is NEVER caused by depression (though chronic pain Can cause depression). Absolutely launch education to stop this insanity about how all these pain patients are just depressed/anxious…yes we are but it’s a SYMPTOM of chronic pain, not a cause.

9) Educational programs that help a CPP learn how to manage their body…like…a task that used to take one hour may now take several days to complete. This may sound like a no brainer, but to an active go getter this is an extremely hard learn and it would help stress and emotional duress if there was education in how to live to maximize function.

David Wieland

Joanna Smitherman I suffer from CRPS, Scheuermanns Disease, Along over a dozen herniated and ruptured disks between my lower / upper back and neck, One problem with what you are suggesting “stop the other doctors from prescribing pain meds except on a very small amount” is that patients such as myself would be completely and totally screwed. I developed CRPS due to a botched epidural steroid injection procedure done to my neck in 2009, This was performed by the largest medical providers pain clinic in this part of the state. Since then not one other pain clinic will take me on as a patient as I am no longer a candidate for injections, If it was not for the perseverance of my primary care physician and his willingness to prescribe my pain medication I most likely would not be alive right now. There are many primary care physicians out there who know far more then the so called pain management experts, I see nothing wrong with a licensed and trained medical doctor prescribing opioid pain medication properly.

While I have seen numerous surveys for chronic pain patients to complete, I have not seen any for pain management providers who are trying to do their best to help those patients. While I have personally reviewed records from pain specialists and other providers that are of poor quality, lacking in details, actually stated incorrect information, stated that they did a physical exam (when the patient says the provider never touched them!), and many more instances that amount to fraud and unethical behavior, medical boards and other organizations could care little about their behavior. It took years before the “pill mills” were targeted and shut down, but unfortunately even these specialty pain centers behavior borders on pill mill activity. They run patients through all for the sake of the almighty dollar. Multiple PA’s and NP’s to help the doctor (who often has never even seen the chronic pain patient!) and multiple urine drug tests, often with repeated expensive lab confirmations to generate huge incomes for their practice. It’s a crime what the government has done to scare many providers away from treating their own chronic pain patients. It’s also a crime, that goes unpunished, by these clinics that are making big bucks off the needy desperate chronic pain patients.

Rae W.

I agree with Joanna Smitherman and Linda Baley. The misinformation that all chronic pain suffers are the same as addicts who overdose can NOT be put in the same category. The new federal laws in regards to the MED (morphine equivalent dose) of all opiods is DIRECTLY affecting Chronic Pain sufferers.. it will NOT affect drug addicts (where the overdoses are predominately happening). I have been on a pain contract for over 7 years now. I an routinely given random urinalysis tests to make sure that I am following my contract, not using illicit drugs, or drinking alcohol and that there is not to much of my medication in my system. I have followed all rules and regulations regarding my medication including going so far as to purchase a biometric safe that can only be opened via a fingerprint. So that no one can access my medications.. but even with that.. because of the new Federal Guidelines..I am being forced to have my medications reduced (I am not even at the max dosage for chronic pain management) because the business that controls my doctors facility says it must be lowered. The pain management clinics often rely on cortisone injections..I myself can NOT have them as they raise my blood sugar to high and are dangerous for me. The clinics are mainly run by anesthesiologists who supposedly specialize in pain.. but cortisone injections are all they offer. I rely on my medications to be able to move without being in so much pain I cry. I have multiple conditions they cause my pain. I do also incorporate physical therapy techniques that I’ve learned via many many sessions for injuries and to help my day to day activities to not aggravate my conditions. I honestly believe that people who abuse drugs need stiffer laws and EASIER ACCESS to rehabilitation centers.. and insurances that cover such centers. Chronic Pain suffers shouldn’t pay the price for what the addicts are doing, and that’s honestly what’s happening.

I’m confused as to how weaning off opioids can be justified (& PUSHED) for conditions that are incurable & degenerative. It makes no sense to me.

Dee

Thank you for the opportunity to respond

Cindy Ragle

Chronic pain must be dealt with on an individual level.
I don’t believe that there is a one size fits all answer.
Certainly Doctors should be approaching this one patient at a time.
Education, for doctors and patients, is the place to start. In my humble opinion, using facts about chronic pain. Not telling us that less pain meds will do more for our pain. Or lying to us at all. We are completely familiar with our pain, we chronic pain sufferers, and saying untrue things to us is not acceptable and not helpful.
I have severe Spinal Stenosis, progressed Degenerative Disc Disease, I can walk and babysit my 3 year old grandson, with pain meds, and without I’m faily restricted to my bed.
I have a whole rich rewarding life using appropiate medication.
I’m happy to help your efforts any way I can.

Front

Another part is the federal gov needs to get out of the way of pot. Yes theres medical pot,but where I live,we have the most restrictive of about any program. Which is better then nothing. I appreciate what I have. But pain patients need more variety and access to plant.

Cindy Toscano

The opioid epidemic has negatively impacted chronic pain patients. The biggest problem that I personally see is that patients who were evaluated by accredited pain management specialists and determined to truly need opioid medication to help them have a better quality of life are now left with no other alternative that is covered by insurance. Ketamine infusions, acupuncture, CBD oil, virtual reality therapy have all been clinically demonstrated to be effective alternatives to opioids but very very few insurance companies cover any of these treatment modalities even when patients go through the arduous process of requesting for an exception. Insurance companies cover a 30 day supply of opioids for $35 or less. Ketamine infusions can cost well over $500 a treatment and some patients need 4 or so a month! If alternatives to opioids that treated chronic severe pain we’re more accessible and covered by insurance, this would go a long way towards solving the problem.

Lina

I truly believe that the first thing they should do is to backtrack slightly, by perhaps a year, and discuss how exactly physician mindset has changed over one year in regard to their stance both then and now, on opiods.

I say this because it appears to me and many I know, that many many physician minds have flipped over to the belief that what they have always known to be true about opiods, is not true.

They have had a complete change of heart in prescribing opiod based pain medicines, because they have bought into the huge and never-ending narrative against opiods.

If you do not suffer from a painful condition, as they don’t, you will never, and can never, know what real pain is, and can never know that opiod medications REALLY DO WORK.

They really DO make enough pain subside so many people can be productive.in life again. Or, so they can take a shower again and maybe wash some dishes again. Or, they really DO actually let people participate in a family function again, instead of staying away in their bedroom because they hurt so bad.

There has not been nearly enough education, or publicity, that speaks about THE REAL TRUTH.

The real truth is- this is About two things. Two things that have ajjwawp gone together.

PAIN AND OPIODS TO TREAT IT.

It seems that connection has been completely lost since the “guidelines” were made public.

The manipulated data ALWAYS wants to include illegal opiods such as heroin, when they show the tv commercials with pictures of prescription pill bottles when talking about restricting pain medication to patients.

Monitor the physicians!
Have your computerized data on patients for the sole purpose of over using/abusing. And get back to using opiods for it’s intended purpose…for pain relief for the suffering.

The tale of the snowball affect here, seems astounding to me, and could be the biggest hoax of the century. If someone high up enough for all to listen doesn’t expose it.

Linda Olds

We need enough pain management providers (doctors, NPs, PAs) so that we have access to someone knowledgeable about it.
There should be a process to go through, varying depending on the patient’s history and problems, for finding alternative methods of pain control, not just opiates.
However, if opiates are needed, temporarily or long term, the state should not be deciding what to do.
The patient and the provider should be allowed to decide on the best medication and dose, without fear of the state, which has no medical knowledge (or knowledge of the patient), imposing limits.
The role of the state should only be to look for abuses of the system, as when prescriptions are given without even seeing patients, or when illegal drugs are used.

Sally Arany

The survey consists of a “pick five” request of maybe 15 choices. Some seemed like no-brainers: equal pain relief access for all, honoring the patient/physician decision rather than some amorphic/ambiguous unaccountable group. I found nearly all of the options compelling, but ultimately, it comes down to personal experience. I support insurance coverage for a vast array of alternative therapies; however, in this limited realm, I did not vote for what didn’t work for me.

Joanna Smitherman

Chronic pain patients who are in a pain management program should not have their meds cut. More options covered by insuramce, more pain management doctors and stop the other doctors from prescribing pain meds except on a very small amount. The pain management doctors who are monitoring patients should be able to do and prescribe what the patient needs to live a decent life .

Rochelle

Done, thank you. Problem is there are more than the five only they wanted that need to be addressed and developed. Its a start.

Linda Baley

I really apreciate you doing this survey. I, as a cronic pain patient, am apauled at what is going on in our country right now in regards to pain medication. There are those of us who need opioids for our long term cronic pain but are being cut off them instead due to people who really dont need them and their abuse, not right! I have a disease that creates emense pain and will have this for the rest of my life. I have been on opioid, er, for about 18 years now. I am still alive and have never abused them nor have i ever gotten “high” from them. I feel that if those of us who need these to maintain a some what quality life or just to function shouldnt have to be made to feel like a drug addict. How about monitoring the drugs and people? Make it mandatory for random drug screens, covered by insurance to make sure the drug is in our system and at the dose perscribed which if not in the system, indicates they are selling them. If too much is in the system, they are not taking them as prescribed and opens up a whole other issue. If a patient/Doctor are being monitored, there shouldnt be a problem with overdose or pills being sold on the street. If its found that the prescribed drug isnt being used as Doctor ordered then kick them off immediately and dont give them anymore, obviously they do not have cronic pain! These are the people who are causing those of us with real pain to suffer without. This has been a very condensed version on how i feel about the “opioid crises” and what should be done about it. If i had unlimited space to wright, i could and would say so much more, lol. There needs to be a division btwn people who have documented, real cronic pain and drug users who want to get high. Big, huge difference between the two!!
Linda

kelly

wow, they weren’t kidding about the “short” part….one question. Succinct.

akbj

To begin, did you refer to Ca as the nations largest state in terms of geography or population? ( I live in Alaska which is the nations largest state geographically ).
I am appreciative that we have one more opportunity for comments on the National Pain Strategy. I feel fortunate to have been able to participate due to being online when the post landed in my inbox.
A short time ago I was studying websites related to the Ak Mental Health Trust Authority which was created as a way to comprehensively continue to fund the Ak mental health treatment system. (As I understand it) On its facebook page there were posts referring to stigmas surrounding mental health issues. I decided to add my own opinion on the current stigmas surrounding the treatment (and lack therof) of chronic pain. I compared our stigmatization to the same regarding mental health care. I felt so much better just to address our various conditions & get my ideas & opinions to a possibly different audience.
Have been reading these posts for some time now but have never had the nerve to attempt to contribute. Realized today that my city, (Anchorage, Ak ) has legislative & representative’s offices locally rather than just our capital city of Juneau. I could actually call them & go there to at least leave written comments & opinions with the staffers of our local state offices. Am trying to increase my levels of empowerment learning from the contributers from these pages. Thank you.