Calling it one “prong” of her plan to fight the opioid epidemic, Healey has ordered several of her top lieutenants to cull through Medicaid databases and chase tips of doctors and clinics dishing out powerful painkillers “willy-nilly.”
Only focusing on the poor people with Medicaid, huh? The ones that can’t fight back? When it’s actually the middle-class white people you should be looking at, along with doctors prescribing pain meds to their family members and friends. That’s where most of the diversion is happening.
And isn’t it the State Medical Board’s job to go after rouge doctors and pill mills?
Healey’s crackdown comes as state police yesterday reported nearly 220 suspected fatal overdoses in just the first three months of this year — a death toll that doesn’t include Boston, Springfield and Worcester. The state Department of Public Health previously reported 978 overdose deaths related to opioids in Massachusetts in 2013, up from 668 the previous year.
Population of Massachusetts: 6.7 million (2014)
Gov. Charlie Baker has also assembled an opioid task force to address the emergency, with a public meeting planned for today at the State House…
Healey is also calling for the state to beef up its Prescription Monitoring Program…
Yeah, because federal funds are basically endless to support the blacklisting of pain patients via the PDMPs.
But Healey emphasized that “this is not an attack on doctors.”
Too late. Doctors have and will continue to stop prescribing the drugs on the DEA’s hit list, leaving pain patients without any options for treatment. As livingonchi (in Massachusetts) mentioned in an earlier comment, she had to wait a year to get an appointment with a pain clinic — only to be told, after that year was up, that they had no record of her appointment.
Paul Rae · Top Commenter · Umass amherst
Punyamurtula Kishore goes on trial Monday; it’s only been 3 1/2 years after all since Martha Coakley closed down his non-narcotic treatment clinics (52 of them). Gee, what’s happened since then? Ruined the guy’s life on a bunch of phoney charges. Hundreds of OD deaths since. Will the Herald bother covering that?
Terri Anderson · Top Commenter
The Attorney General is targeting the wrong doctors. She should go after interventional pain physicians who are harming back pain patients on a grand scale. Preventable medical error is now the 3rd leading cause of death – not to mention a major player in driving up patient pain. Check out the July 2014 U.S. Senate hearing chaired by Senator Bernie Sanders (Vermont). Interventional “pain” docs are driving up the need for opioid consumption instead of solving the back pain dilemma in the U.S., which is a leading cause of disability: http://missoulian.com/lifestyles/hometowns/ravalli-county-residents-take-epidural-warning-to-fda/article_b45c9d85-c265-5f16-a6b2-31adeb21f053.html
Pain Care is Legal
Do a google search for Attorney General Maura Healey and you will find her campaign website for her AG campaign, which quite nicely contains her facebook and twitter accounts. Please, I encourage all of you pain sufferers, to be sure to drop by and say hello to her 🙂
It’s at times like this that I wish I had a facebook account.
So, let’s look at the suicide rates in Massachusetts, shall we?
In 2011, there were 588 suicides that occurred in Massachusetts; a rate of 8.9/100,000 persons. The number of suicides was 2.9 times higher than homicides…
During the period of 2003-2011, approximately 4,500 persons died of suicide in Massachusetts. Suicide rates increased an average of 4% per year. The overall increase was 35%; from 6.6 to
8.9. There were 164 more suicides in 2011 than in 2003.
The increase in suicide rates was primarily among White, non-Hispanic males whose rates increased an average of 5% per year between 2003 and 2011…
In 2011, suicide methods varied by sex. For males, suffocation/hanging (N=217) and firearm (N=110) were the most common methods used. For females, the leading methods were poisoning (N=69) and suffocation/hanging (N=56).
But in the last two years, eight of Radke’s fellow Massachusetts National Guardsmen — including one of his friends — completed the act of suicide. That’s a significant increase from five suicides over the previous nine years…
Suicide at Plymouth jail highlights alarming problem in Massachusetts prisons
MIT had the highest suicide rate: 10.2 per 100,000 undergraduate and graduate students.