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Pledging to Treat Opioid Epidemic 'Like the Public Health Crisis That It Is,' Warren Unveils CARE Act

Pledging to Treat Opioid Epidemic 'Like the Public Health Crisis That It Is,' Warren Unveils CARE Act

Julia Conley, staff writer

Vowing to hold to account the billionaire family whose pharmaceutical company fueled the opioid epidemic, Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Rep. Elijah Cummings on Wednesday unveiled a sweeping plan to help end the crisis which kills tens of thousands of Americans per year.

What about the intractable pain patients with incurable, painful diseases being left out in the cold? Physicians throwing them out of their practice, dehumanizing them ? Taking their last hope for a life without severe intractable pain? What about the shortages of these drugs all across America ?
Did we not learn from prohibition?
As prescriptions went down heroin and IMF( illicitly manufactured fentanyl) ODs went up. We have an addiction problem which can be treated but not at the expense of fellow Americans suffering without care and much needed opioids.

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Yes I suffer from severe back pain form DDD and Scoliosis,but i got no relief from opioids just increasing addiction. I now go to a chiropractor and do not have to take pain meds except aspirin. I was first diagnosed when I was 16 and mostly was told I would have to suffer .I was fifty before I went to a chiropractor .No medical doctor ever suggested it. I wasted so much time trying to live with pain.

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Thank you Elizabeth Warren, because CARE, the name of your program is what Americans need in their health care.
Ralph Nader has a group called Worst Pill/Best Pill where people can look up drugs and see their history. They also say don’t take anything until its been o the market for at lest 7 years.It also a horror that the internal memos of the Sacklers show that they knew the horror that heir opioids would create, but they were making so much money------sigh America trying to make that pills so that patients feel strong and heroic… oh wait BAYER made that in the early 20th century----that heroic pill—oh and what did they call it…oh yeah —that was heroin. : (

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You don’t stop suicidal behavior like drug and alcohol addiction by throwing money at interdiction, incarceration and treatment. You stop it by giving addicts the money that allows them to meet basic needs that when unmet, cause such suicidal behavior. A Universal Basic Income.

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BElizabeth Warren is an amazing Senator and woman! She has achieved consumer protection that the “moderate refucklican” Obama then tried to render toothless. And yet she persists. I don’t get why she can’t get any traction except that Wall Strreet is paying the cable stooges to ignore her, and online trolls to make gratuitous snarks about her. Wall Street and Tim Gietner REALLY hate her–mainly because she’s smarter and more courageous than they are. Her new proposal proves that.


I am glad she finally got rid of her money from them. One can always have a change of heart. Better late than never.
I can remember back in the early 2000’s seeing those little tawdry pain clinics starting in poor areas of town.
I like all of Warren’s legislation. Hope it goes through.

Drug addicts spend money on drugs first, and even sell clothes off their back to suppory their habit. A brother-in-law of mine did this with clothing his mother gave him. But I agree that meeting their basic needs first should be a priority, because reducing addiction or any compulsion involves reducing stress.

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I saw a republican come to the well to speak. His topic: Suicide. He gave reasons galore and when he got to the question of opioids his concern that they cause suicides did not address those pain patients being denied medication to ease their suffering. Needless to say there was no mention of chronic pain patients committing suicide in increasing numbers as they are denied proper medical attention with pain medication that actually works to some degree.
Why are these people ignored, and all attention given to the screw-ups and foolish drug abusers?

As a spin off, I would like to make a comment on UBI. Your take on drug addicts and their plight is an interesting tie into UBI. I would suggest that with UBI we could address the “beyond K through 12” education expense. While receiving UBI students would have a fighting chance at fiscal survivability. And further education wouldn’t need a free ride of an additional subsidy. At least not in full.

It’s true, there is a big worldwidedrug shortage of pain medicines, such as morphine, gabapentin, midazolam and others. It’s always useful to check if the drug of interest is available because doctors sometimes also have nothing to do if there is no possibility to get that product. However, one should always receive some kind of substitution. Doctors are also usually taught how to substitute any drug and that patients with incurable diseases should receive all the needed anesthetics without thinking about addiction.

Agreed. I don’t think there are any bills currently before Congress that really deal well with chronic pain management for people that need it - and most of the opioid addiction bills tend to just make access to pain meds more difficult for that group. Warren’s bill that is the topic here only gives funding for educational efforts regarding already existing alternative treatments. There are also a couple of pain research bills before Congress providing funding for research on non-addictive pain relief. For example, many of the progressive members of congress are all co-sponsors of the VA Medicinal Cannabis Research Act of 2019 (HR712) to put funding into research on Medical Marijuana for chronic pain and other conditions.

There seems to be a lot of confusion about the difference between dependency and addiction. Many people are dependent on their pain meds to live a relatively normal life. They need to have appropriate access without stupid waiting periods, medical professionals under threat of punishment for prescribing palliative care, constant insurance company denials, etc…