The DEA- my personal opinion
First, I want to say that I speak only for myself in regards to this post. Pharmer.org, nor any of it's members, have anything to do with this post. This is strictly my opinion, formed from 2 years of jumping through hoops in order to receive adequate medical care for my back issues, which are all well documented with MRI's, bone density studies, and X-Rays.
We all know there is a supposed opioid epidimic in this country. However; has anyone ever stopped and really looked further into why we are in this state of Dr. paranoia in regards to pain medication, or any controlled substances for that matter? Well, I did, and maybe I was naive before, but I had no idea who the DEA was staffed by. I assumed it was doctors, and I assumed wrong.
The current acting administrator of the DEA, Chuck Rosenberg, served as the chief of staff and senior counselor to the FBI. Prior to that, he was a partner of a law firm in DC, as well as a former federal prosecutor, Prior to Rosenberg, the Administrator of the DEA was Michele Leonhart- a career law enforcement officer, and former Administrator of the DEA. Like Rosenberg, Leonhart was also a graduate from law school. Prior to Leonhart, Karen Tandy was the head of the DEA. Prior to becoming a DEA agent, Tandy was the Associate Deputy Attorney General and Director of the Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task Force.
This is where I stopped researching the history of it's directors, after finding they were all associated with law firms, or prosecution. Normally, this would not be an issue for me, as I generally do not care. However, these are the individuals who are pressuring our doctors, and making access to adequate pain coverage nearly impossible. Doctors are in fear of an organization who has no medical training, no pharmaceutical training, and an apparent inability to seperate legitimate prescribing practices from outlandish practices. No doctor, except for those involved in illegal activities, should be foreced to live in fear of prosecution from an organization that is more geared towards crime prevention and prosecution than they are public health welfare.
I'm not one for conspiracy theories; I think they are all absurd. After researching the DEA, though, I can't help but feel like there is more to their agenda aimed at doctors than they are letting on. By limiting the amount, and type of medication that doctors can dispense, the DEA has essentially created a black market. By creating a black market, you increase criminal activity. Increased criminal activity leads to increased use of DEA resources. So, in my opinion, it's almost as though they created this problem in order to appear to solve the problem, and make headlines while doing so. Afterall, who is it that tracks illegal black markets? Ultimately, the DEA has to get involved.
One thing I should have mentioned earlier; I know the FDA and CDC is not the DEA. I know that the CDC is responsible for releasing "guidelines" that practitioners can choose to follow or disregard. I know the CDC is also the main government organization responsible for the media hype surrounding the "opioid epidimic". However, the CDC has not even remotely mentioned the increased suicide rate since the opioid restrictions/threats were imposed. Nor have they acknowledged the huge influx of the illegal opiate that is claiming countless lives. Also, in their study where the CDC declared an opioid epidimic because of the number of overdose deaths, they did not differentiate prescription opiates versus the street drug. The study really read like a propaganda piece.
I had to make this post to get this off of my chest. At one point, I was in a great pain management group who knew I had a prescription from a psychiatrist for klonopin. For 9 years, this office did not care about my klonopin. Once the DEA started making raids here in Indiana, I was kicked out of their practice, and forced to find a new pain management doctor, which has been horrible in and of itself. I was one of the lucky few who got superb relief from Suboxone for pain. Now, when I go into a pain doctor, the first thing they say is "we don't rx suboxone just so you are aware." So, now I'm on the lowest dose of pain medication that I have ever been on, and it's literally driving me insane. I can not get a good night's sleep, or even have 2 hours of pure pain relief from 7.5mg of hydrocodone and 325mg of acetaminophen.
I guess the main point to my post is, I'm tired of the government intimidating doctors. There are surely enough real criminals out there (not saying some doctors are not criminals as well) that need caught moreso than the doctor who writes for opiate pain medications. DEA- focus on your job, and let our doctors focus on theirs.
BTW, I know this post may open me up to scrutiny, but I have nothing to hide even if LE reads this. Matter of fact, if any LE does read this, please pass it on to your boss, and ask that he or she passes it along to their boss. We should not live in a country where healthcare is mandated by a government agency.
Thanks for reading, to those of you who actually took the time to read this entire post.. I'm sure I left some stuff out I meant to say, but my notes became illegible around 230am, so I just winged it.