(and to All Governors about Thousands of Others Like Her)
Dear Governor Newsom,
This letter is to announce that you and your staff are about to become complicit in the wrongful death of a California resident, Ms. Trini Yeager. Her death hasn’t happened yet, but it almost certainly will. Cause of death might be mislabeled as medical collapse or heart failure. But it will actually be a death by willful negligence and government malfeasance. It is one of hundreds to which I and other patient advocates bear witness. And you will be personally at fault, if you dither and equivocate and do nothing in the face of this self-made public health crisis.
Trini is one of thousands who are being denied safe and effective treatment for physical agony. Because I write extensively about the government’s war against pain patients, I was one of those to whom Trini reached out for help, in social media. She also talked with KOGO San Diego News Radio anchor Marilyn Hyder. I contributed to an interview which Marilyn broadcast on her behalf, on Saturday December 14th. [Link: https://kogo.iheart.com/featured/health-clipboard/content/2019-12-11-how-the-opioid-crisis-is-killing-people-who-need-more-opioids-than-allowed/] I also personally called the Office of the Governor to ask for help to get Trini referred to a doctor for pain treatment. I was told someone would follow up to get her care. It appears that nobody did.
I’ll let Trini describe your failure in her own words:
“…I can no longer fight. I give in. The pain forces me to. I’ve been turned away by everyone and expected to handle severe spinal cord nerve pain with no medication and no doctor. This is my final message to my son, Christopher:
“Son, I can’t believe it has come to this but I can no longer withstand this torment and pain and lack of help!. Hospice/palliative came to interview me yesterday and today 12/18/19 (for the 5th time) and it was the same as before. I don’t qualify for help… Thank you for trying to desperately get me out to Barcelona where they can at least get me some pain medication, but unfortunately it came too late.
“… I ran out of medication on Wednesday 12/18/19. I am in so much pain I cannot get out of bed. No one… can get the medication I need in time to be able to even withstand one 24 hr day… A month ago I could’ve come [to visit] … but neither you nor I had the money for me to get there. Now you have the money for me to get there but I don’t have the medication I need to even be able to get out of bed and pack a backpack.”
“I can’t handle the pain anymore and I’m so sorry. You know I love you with all my heart and this breaks my heart that no one would help me in time. I can’t live in this pain so I’m going to kill the pain.
“… Unfortunately we live in a world that doesn’t care about human “suffering” regardless of how justified. — even though it was caused by a doctor. No one would come to my aid or rescue in time. I was abandoned by ALL doctors, FDA, CDC, DEA, and Government… and expected to live with my spinal cord injury with no pain medication. I was completely abandoned with no help…
“… I even went on television and radio and went to State Senator Patricia Bates’ office, pleading for my life. “ [the author participated in this conference call].
The interview on KOGO Radio includes a response from a member of State Senator Bate’s senior staff. Ms Bates is former Senate Minority Leader of the State Senate. Her staffer’s response was — at best — an artful dodging of responsibility. He acknowledged that government officials are hearing reports of damage done to patients by restrictions on pain therapy. But he made no commitment to help, vaguely citing “national dimensions” of the problem.
Not good enough!
There is a horrid footnote to this narrative. Somebody among the many to whom Trini and Marilyln and I talked, contacted local police who made a “wellness visit” to her home. She was handcuffed and loaded into the back of a police cruiser without even a pillow to sit on for her injured spine. Only after she pled to be transported lying down was an ambulance called. She was held overnight at a local hospital and given minimal doses of Hydrocodone and Demerol. She has no ongoing prescription or relationship with a physician.
Thus my plea to you, Governor Newsom: convene a special session of the California legislature before Christmas, to write and pass legislation for people like Trini. Her life and many others are being destroyed by the desertion of pain management doctors under a reign of terror and persecution mounted by your Attorney General, State drug enforcement and the State Medical Board. “A Bill to Deter Departure of Providers From Pain Management” offers model legislation that can be tailored for all 50 States and Federal Agencies [link: https://face-facts.org/lawhern/congress-clean-up-this-mess/]
MAKE THIS HAPPEN!