LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — It’s been three years since the CDC issued its supposedly voluntary guidelines for opioid prescriptions. Tens of millions of legitimate pain patients have had their lives turned upside down since then. Instead of a decrease in overdoses, the number of opioid related deaths has increased since the CDC edict, as addicts have turned to illicit street drugs such as heroin and fentanyl.
The crackdown on legal pain medications failed to reduce opioid overdoses among addicts, but has caused death and suffering for legitimate patients suffering with chronic pain. Their life-saving medications have been reduced or cut off altogether.
Last week, the CDC issued a new statement reminding doctors and regulators that its guidelines were never meant to result in forced tapering of medication for legitimate pain patients. Now, it is up to states and regulatory bodies to reverse the policies which have already ruined so many lives. Nevada is one state that is considering legislation to give physicians the discretion to prescribe opioid medications as they see fit, based on the needs of individual patients.
Retired pharmacist and pain patient advocate Rick Martin has been lobbying Nevada officials for a return to normalcy. He recently spoke to the I-Team.