Inside Canada’s ‘other opioid epidemic’ — patients cut off from medical painkillers
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Human Rights Watch to start investigation into how pain patients treated in U.S. and the need for the same in Canada
Author: Barry D. Ulmer, Executive Director The Chronic Pain Association of Canada
Human Rights Watch (HRW) in the U.S. is starting an investigation into the way people with pain in that country are being treated.
They started their efforts in the United States when researchers from HRW were studying the treatment of cancer and palliative care patients and saw how poorly pain was treated as a human rights issue. They found people were giving testimony much the same as those who were victims of police torture. They readily admitted this was an issue that no one was really paying attention to. When they started looking into the situation more closely they found that many chronic pain patients who had been on opiates were being taken off them arbitrarily and could not find any other physician who would look after them. People were living in agony and dying, either by suicide or taking illegal drugs purchased on the street.
This past Sunday the Director of Health and Human Rights for HRW was a guest on the Roy Green Show. He indicated that they were not planning to do something in Canada, but would possibly mention in their final report in the U.S. that the situation in Canada is just as dire. He indicated Canada only had a small office in Toronto and that the U.S. office in New York would be the one who would be the lead in any effort in Canada.
We don’t think this is acceptable as the Canadian office does generate some substantial funds for their services, and Canadians are suffering as much as the Americans due to the ridiculous policies that have come from the biased and unscientific guidelines of the CDC. If we can generate enough interest in having HRW do something in Canada, it would be very beneficial to many people.
People can contact the HRW office in Toronto and New York, tell them their stories and ask them to do launch a similar investigation into the rights of pain patients in Canada.
In Toronto, the contact is Farida Deif at firstname.lastname@example.org, or www.hrw.org/contact-our-office-Toronto, In New York the contact is Diederik Lohman at email@example.com.
Please consider writing our health ministers regarding the new legislation around Opioid prescriptions and its impact on Chronic Pain patients.
Below are letters you can print off and use.
By Jacqueline Kline
This is Fibromyalgia, a vicious circle that appears to have no ending. There are of course other symptoms thrown in there like morning stiffness, brain fog, and forgetfulness, you can probably add some of your own little quirks in there as well, I know I can.
I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia 31 years ago and it took them over a year to tell me what was wrong. I had every ex-ray possible and any other procedure that can be done to a person. No one was really listening to me when I said it is not my bones or my organs, “It is my muscles and joint”. I finally came across a Dr. who knew exactly what I was saying and he gave it a name “FIBROMYALGIA” I wasn’t crazy after all.
In those 30 years I have taken a number of medications that all go with the name fibromyalgia. Some I left behind and some I have stayed with but I found that the meds are not the answer, they do help but I turned to water. I found that water is the answer for me. At first I went to a couple of aquacise classes and found that I didn’t hurt which was really surprising. I then added a couple more and found I was really feeling good. In the first year I increased my couple of times to 5 times a week and I stuck with it.
As you know it is very difficult to stick to a course of action or whatever you are doing until you do stop and find out how much better you “did” feel during that period of time. You realise that whatever your body was doing it was helping with the pain, stiffness, depression and whatever else this syndrome is throwing at you.
I cannot stress enough how powerful water is and what it can do for you. I have been doing water exercises for 29 years and I have been an instructor for 23 of those years. I love it and it helps, so if you have the power to do get to a pool and do some water exercises I would advise you to do it, it truly saved my life. It not only helps your body but the friendships you make along the way helps your heart and your mind. Stay strong and healthy, mentally and physically and you are on top of the world.
Read more here.
Read the article from the CBC here.
Read article here