The Community for Subjective Diseases

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Everyone that is paying attention, clearly sees that the chronic pain community has little unity. In the future I am no longer going to talk about the chronic pain people…  we have a very large “community of pts”  dealing with subjective diseases which encompasses  – (pain, depression, anxiety, ADD/ADHD, and an array of mental health issues)

One thing that subjective disease have in common is that there is really no diagnosed tests that will confirm the existence of the disease. Most pts are determined to have a disease purely from symptoms.

Perhaps it is time that all those with subjective diseases to come together under one VERY LARGE TENT.

I have created what I have faulted others for doing… I have created a new Face Book page

They claim that there is 100+ million chronic pain pts … how many more millions of pts dealing with subjective diseases could find a common goal under this big tent.

Abt 85% of Congress is up for re-election in abt 7 months… The ENTIRE HOUSE and 33-34 Senators.  The number of votes by those with subjective diseases could control who is elected – or thrown out of any office – that is up for re-election from cities, counties, states, federally.  This community has the ability to dump our ingrained TWO PARTY POLITICAL SYSTEM. Many other countries are not “locked” into a two party system why are we ?

Should many of the thousand odd chronic pain FB pages be deleted and/or “go dark” and point to our community tent ?

This is not MY PROJECT … it is a project that will grow and make a significant impact for those who are dealing with subjective diseases.. if those with subjective work together and take the reigns and create a movement that can neither be ignored nor pushed aside. If those who are part of this community, cannot find the will to cooperate with each other and get things accomplished then it will fail.  If the community allows one person to become a self appointed “king”, “queen” or “dictator” of the community the community will quietly fall apart. 

I welcome input


I reserve the right of editorial censorship

It looks like the political “mud slinging” has already started – IMO – worse than the national election two years ago… I am taking a stand – in particular – against “slanderous name calling”  directed toward specific politicians, particular political parties and/or specific people.  I don’t mind political debate – based on FACTS… when the debate drifts off the road based on FACTOIDS, FAKE NEWS, opinions stated as FACTS.. is where I am going to draw the “line in the sand” and delete comments that go down that path.

While personally, I am not a big fan of our political/bureaucratic system.. IMO.. it is too self serving… Admittedly, politically I tend to lean to the POLITICAL RIGHT but that is because the Libertarian party is seemingly always kept in their place by our dominating “two party system”.

I have belonged to a national pharmacy association for 35 yrs… that promotes the saying “get into politics … or get out of pharmacy ..” If you don’t attempt to influence politicians… someone else will…. and IMO this saying applies to those in the chronic pain community and/or pts who are dealing with subjective diseases.  Legislatures, bureaucrats are doing things that are adversely effecting the quality of life of those pts.  As long as those being affected continue to lack unity and/or a large segment chooses to stand on the sidelines, whoever is successfully “bending the ear” of these politicians … they will continue to do so because they have  little/no concern about the consequences and/or collateral damage that they cause to those suffering and dealing with subjective diseases.

I am sure that the vast majority of my readers will understand and cooperate…those who try to challenge this policy…  It is THREE STRIKES and you are out/banned… and WORDPRESS gives me your IP ADDRESS attached to your comment(s)… Once banned, just posting under a different name – WILL NOT WORK !  Everyone needs to “play nice “

Lastly, please do not post anything promoting a particular vendor or any entity or person selling a product/particular service. Because some may perceive/believe that they have my endorsement which may or may not be the case. Anyone posting a link to a professional selling a product/service will be edited out

2019 in review … what killed us

who will not be here tomorrow


2016 in review … what killed us

2017 in review … what killed us

2018 in review … what killed us

6775 Americans will die EVERY DAY – from various reasons


140 will be SUCCESSFUL – including 20 veterans

270 will die from hospital acquired antibiotic resistant “bug” because staff won’t properly wash hands and/or proper infection control.

350 will die from their use/abuse of the drug ALCOHOL

1200 will die from their use/abuse of the drug NICOTINE

1400 will contract C-DIF from Hospital or Nursing home because staff doesn’t properly wash their hands are adhere to infection control  

80 WILL DIE mostly elderly.

850 will die from OBESITY

700 will die from medical errors

150 will die from Flu/Pneumonia

80 will die from Homicide

80 will die in car accidents


United States of America
from Jan 1, 2018 – Dec 31, 2018 (6:27:30 PM)

Someone just died by: Death Box

Just the Data … Raw and Undigested

Abortion *: 1091318
Heart Disease: 613959
Cancer: 591325
Tobacco: 349779
Obesity: 306806
Medical Errors: 251295
Stroke: 133019
Lower Respiratory Disease: 142853
Accident (unintentional): 135967
Hospital Associated Infection: 98937
Alcohol *: 99937
Diabetes: 76440
Alzheimer’s Disease: 93482
Influenza/Pneumonia: 55192
Kidney Failure: 42735
Blood Infection: 33443
Suicide: 42746
Drunk Driving: 33787
Unintentional Poisoning: 31738
All Drug Abuse: 24989
Homicide: 16788
Prescription Drug Overdose: 14991
Murder by gun: 11486
Texting while Driving: 5985
Pedestrian: 4997
Drowning: 3913
Fire Related: 3498
Malnutrition: 2770
Domestic Violence: 1459
Smoking in Bed: 780
Falling out of Bed: 598
Killed by Falling Tree: 149
Lawnmower: 68
Spontaneous Combustion: 0
Your chance of death is 100%. Are you ready?

Totals of all categories are based upon past trends documented below.



I am being completely weaned off my meds, & suspect I will kill myself with the amount of pain I am in, & will be by the time this is over (the wean that is). Already can’t function.

My husband committed suicide after being abandoned by his pain dr.

Please pray for me as I am on the brink of suicide! I don’t want to die but can’t handle the pain anymore! The doctor that I am currently seeing will not give me enough pills to last all month every month… I have to wait until Oct to get in with a pain management doctor whom I already know by others that I know sees this doctor that he will help me, need prayer to hold on until oct… I keep thinking of my family who needs me hear.

“We just lost another intractable member of our support group two nights ago. She committed suicide because her medications were taken away for interstitial cystitis (a horribly painful bladder condition) and pudendal neuralgia, both of which she had battled for years

D D., journalist and prescribed fentanyl patient for a dozen years joined me on air last weekend with her husband and spoke of her suicide plan should the only relief from constant agony be heavily reduced or taken away.

I was told last Friday that my Dr. will be tapering my meds again . When I told him I didn’t think my body could take another lowering he stated ” it wasn’t my
License on the line”, I stated ” no , but it’s my life on the line”!!!!! I can not continue to live this way . I can not continue to suffer in agony when my medications and dose where working just fine before and I was a productive member of society . I can no longer take this. I have a plan in place to end my life myself When I am forced to reduce my Medications again . I just can’t do it anymore .

On Friday at around 9 p.m. U.S. Navy veteran Kevin Keller parked his red pickup truck in the parking lot at the Wytheville Rite-Aid, walked across the grass and stood in front of the U.S. Veterans Community Based Outpatient Clinic next door.

Sick and tired of being in pain, he pulled out a gun, shot a hole in the office door, aimed the gun barrel at his head and ended his hurt once and for all.

As a longterm pain patient with a current unsupportive pain dr, I just thought I’d share the reality of the position I’m in right now…

I’m in very bad pain all the time for very legit and well documented reasons. My pain dr however never gives me enough meds to help me. He just keeps reducing them, which is causing me to be in even more pain and suffer so much more. My quality of life also continues to go downhill at the same time. I was just given a letter by him recently too about some study indicating an increase in deaths if you take opioids and benzos. It stated he’s no longer going to give pain meds to anyone who is taking a benzo. I take one, because I have to, for a seizure disorder, not because I want to. He told me to pick one or the other though, plus went ahead and reduced my pain meds some more. He doesn’t seem to care the least bit. I’ve looked hard and so far I can’t find another one to get in to see near me at this time, but I’m desperately still trying. Unfortunately, they’re few and far between here, in addition to the wait for an appointment being long. I’ve even called hospice for help. So far, they haven’t been of much help either, because I don’t have a dr who will say I have six months or less to live. I told them either choice my pain dr is giving me is very inhumane, so I’d rather just quit eating and drinking, to the point where I pass away from that, while I get some kind of comfort care from them. I don’t really want to though, although I do have a long list of some very bad health problems, including a high probability that I have cancer and it’s spread. Am I suicidal? No. Will I be if my pain and seizure meds are taken away. Highly likely. I never ever saw this coming either. I don’t have a clue what to do and the clock is ticking, but I’m still fighting for an answer. So far, I can’t find not even one dr to help me though. Not one. I know my life depends on it, but at what point will these drs let my suffering become so inhumane that I just can’t take it anymore. I just don’t know right now. It’s a very scary place to be in for sure. That I do know.

The patient was being denied the medicine that had been alleviating his pain and committed suicide because, “he couldn’t live with the pain anymore. He could not see a future. He had no hope. He had no life.”

I am a chronic pain patient who has been on fairly high doses of opiates for about nine years now. My dose has been forcibly reduced since the cdc guidelines. I moved to Oregon from Alaska and can’t find a doctor to prescribe my medication. I pray I have the strength not to take my own life!

Zach Williams of Minnesota  committed suicide at age 35. He was a veteran of Iraq and had experienced back pain and a brain injury from his time in service. He had treated his pain with narcotics until the VA began reducing prescriptions.

Ryan Trunzo committed suicide at the age of 26. He was an army veteran of Iraq. He had experienced fractures in his back for which he tried to get effective painkillers, but failed due to VA policy. His mother stated “I feel like the VA took my son’s life.”

Kevin Keller, a Navy veteran, committed suicide at age 52. He shot v after breaking into the house of his friend, Marty Austin, to take his gun. Austin found a letter left by Keller saying “Marty sorry I broke into your house and took your gun to end the pain!” Keller had experienced a stroke 11 years earlier, and he had worsening pain in the last two years of his life because VA doctors would not give him pain medicine. On the subject of pain medication, Austin said that Keller “was not addicted. He needed it.”

Bob Mason, aged 67, of Montana committed suicide after not having access to drugs to treat his chronic pain for just one week. One doctor who had treated Mason was Mark Ibsen, who shut down his office after the Montana Board of Medical Examiners investigated him for excessive prescription of opioids. According to Mason’s daughter, Mason “didn’t like the drugs, but there were no other options.”

Donald Alan Beyer, living in Idaho, had experienced back pain for years. He suffered from  degenerative disc disease, as well as a job-related injury resulting in a broken back. After his doctor retired, Beyer struggled without pain medicine for months. He shot himself on his 47th birthday. His son, Garrett, said “I guess he felt suicide was his only chance for relief.”

Denny Peck of Washington state was 58 when he ended his life. In 1990, he experienced a severe injury to his vertebrae during a fishing accident. His mother, Lorraine Peck, said “[h]e has been in severe pain ever since,” and his daughter, Amanda Peck, “said she didn’t remember a time when her dad didn’t hurt.” During the last few years of his life, Peck had received opiates for his pain from a Seattle Pain Center, until these clinics closed. After suffering and being unable to find doctors who would help with his pain, Peck called 911. Two days later, Peck was found dead in his home with bullet wounds in his head. A note found near Peck read: “Can’t sleep, can’t eat, can’t do anything. And all the whitecoats don’t care at all.”

Doug Hale of Vermont killed himself at the age of 53. He had experienced pain from interstitial cystitis, and decided to end his life six weeks after his doctor suddenly cut off his opiate painkillers. He left a note reading “Can’t take the chronic pain anymore” before he shot himself in the head. His doctor said he “was no longer willing to risk my license by writing you another script for opioids”  (see attachment A for details of the problem as relyed by his wife Tammi who is now 10 months without a husband as a direct result of the CDC guidelines to prevent deaths)Bruce Graham committed suicide after living with severe pain for two years. At age 62, Graham fell from a ladder, suffering several severe injuries. He had surgery and fell into a coma. After surgery, he suffered from painful adhesions which could not be removed. He relied on opioid painkillers to tolerate his pain, but doctors eventually stopped prescribing the medicine he needed. Two years after his fall, Graham shot himself in the heart to end the pain.

Travis Patterson, a young combat veteran, died two days after a suicide attempt at the age of 26. After the attempt to take his own life, Patterson was brought to the VA emergency room. Doctors offered therapy as a solution, but did not offer any relief for his pain. Patterson died two days after his attempted suicide.

54-year-old Bryan Spece of Montana  killed himself about two weeks after he experienced a major reduction in his pain medication. The CDC recommends a slow reduction in pain medicine, such as a 10% decrease per week. Based on information from Spece’s relative, Spece’s dose could have been reduced by around 70% in the weeks before he died.

In Oregon, Sonja Mae Jonsson ended her life when her doctor stopped giving her pain medicine as a result of the CDC guidelines.

United States veterans have been committing suicide after being unable to receive medicine for pain. These veterans include Peter Kaisen,Daniel Somers, Kevin Keller, Ryan Trunzo, Zach Williams, and Travis Patterson

A 40-year-old woman with fibromyalgia, lupus, and back issues appeared to have committed suicide after not being prescribed enough pain medicine. She had talked about her suicidal thoughts with her friends several times before, saying “there is no quality of life in pain.” She had no husband or children to care for, so she ended her life.

Sherri Little was 53 when she committed suicide. She suffered pain from occipital neuralgia, IBS, and fibromyalgia. A friend described Little as having a “shining soul of activism” as she spent time advocating for other chronic pain sufferers. However, Little had other struggles in her life, such as her feeling that her pain kept her from forming meaningful relationships. In her final days, Little was unable to keep down solid food, and she tried to get medical help from a hospital. When she was unable to receive relief, Little ended her life.

Former NASCAR driver Dick Trickle of North Carolina shot himself at age 71. He suffered from long-term pain under his left breast. Although he went through several medical tests to determine the cause of his pain, the results could not provide relief. After Trickle’s suicide, his brother stated that Dick “must have just decided the pain was too high, because he would have never done it for any other reason.”

39-year-old Julia Kelly committed suicide after suffering ongoing pain resulting from two car accidents. Kelly’s pain caused her to quit her job and move in with her parents, unable to start a family of her own. Her family is certain that the physical and emotional effects of her pain are what drove her to end her life. Kelly had founded a charity to help other chronic pain sufferers, an organization now run by her father in order to help others avoid Julia’s fate.

Sarah Kershaw ended her life at age 49. She was a New York Times Reporter who suffered from occipital neuralgia.

Lynn Gates Jackson, speaking for her friend E.C. who committed suicide after her long term opiates were suddenly reduced by 50% against her will, for no reason.  Lynn reports she felt like the doctors were not treating her like a human being (Ed:  a common complaint) and she made the conscious decision to end her life.

E.C. committed suicide quietly one day in Visalia California.  She was 40.  Her friend reported her death.  “She did not leave a note but I know what she did”.  The doctor would only write a prescription for 10 vicodin and she was in so much pain she could not get to the clinic every few days.   We had talked many times about quitting life. Then she left.  She just left.

Jessica, a patient with RSD/CRPS committed suicide when the pain from her disease became too much for her to bear. A friend asserted that Jessica’s death was not the result of an overdose, and that “living with RSD isn’t living.”

Aliff, Charles

Beyer, Donald Alan

Brunner, Robert “Bruin”

Graham, Bruce

Hale, Doug

Hartsgrove, Daniel P

Ingram III, Charles Richard

Kaisen, Peter

Keller, Kevin

Kershaw, Sarah

Kimberly, Allison

Little, Sherri

Mason, Bob

Miles, Richard

Murphy, Thomas

Paddock, Karon

Patterson, Travis “Patt”

Peck, Denny

Peterson, Michael Jay

Reid, Marsha

Somers, Daniel

Son, Randall Lee

Spece, Brian

Tombs, John

Trickle, Richard “Dick”

Trunzo, Ryan

Williams, Zack

Karon Shettler Paddock  committed suicide on August 7, 2013 

Jessica Simpson took her life July 2017

Mercedes McGuire took her life on Friday, August 4th. She leaves behind her 4 yr old son. She could no longer endure the physical & emotional pain from Trigeminal Neuralgia.

Another Veteran Suicide In Front Of VA Emergency Department

 Depression and Pain makes me want to kill self. Too much physical and emotional pain to continue on. I seek the bliss fullness of Death. Peace. Live together die alone.

 Dr. Mansureh Irvani  suspected overdose victim

Katherine Goddard’s Suicide note: Due to the pain we are both in and can’t get help, this is the only way we can see getting out of it. Goodbye to everybody,”  

Steven Lichtenberg: the 32-year-old Dublin man shot himself  

Fred Sinclair  he was hurting very much and was, in effect, saying goodbye to the family.

Robert Markel, 56 – June 2016 – Denied Pain Meds/Heroin OD

 Lisa June 2016

Jay Lawrence  March 2017

Celisa Henning: killed herself and her twin daughters...

Karen Boje-58  CPP-Deming, NM

Katherine Goddard, 52 –  June 30, 2017 – Palm Coast, FL -Suicide/Denied Opioids List of Suicides, as of 9–10-17

Suicides: Associated with non-consented Opioid Pain Medication Reductions

Lacy Stewart 59,

Ryan Trunzo of Massachusetts committed suicide at the age of 26,-ryan-j  

Mercedes McGuire of Indiana ended her life August 4th, 2017 after struggling with agony originally suppressed with opioid pain medicine but reappearing after her pain medicine was cut back in a fashion after the CDC regulations. She was in such discomfort she went to the ER because she could not stand the intractable pain by “learning to live with it” as suggested by CDC consultants. The ER gave her a small prescription. She went to the pharmacy where they refused to fill it “because she had a pain contract”. She went home and killed herself. She was a young mother with a 4 year old son, Bentley. Bentley, will never get over the loss of his mom.

“Goodbye” Scott Smith: Vet w/PTSD committed murder/suicide. Killed his wife then himself today 11/27/2017

Pamela Clute had been suffering from agonizing back problems and medical treatment had failed to relieve pain that shot down her legs While California’s assisted suicide law went into effect a couple months before Clute’s death, the law only applies to terminally ill patients who are prescribed life-ending drugs by a physician. Clute wasn’t terminally ill

Kellie Bernsen 12/10/2017 Colorado suicide

Scott Smith: Vet w/PTSD committed murder/suicide. Killed his wife then himself today 11/27/2017

  Michelle Bloem committed suicide due to uncontrolled pain

John Lester shot himself on Jan. 8, 2014.

Anne Örtegrentook her life on Jan. 5  

 Debra Bales, 52 – Civilian – January 10, 2018 – Petaluma, CA – Denied Pain Meds/Suicide

 Aliff, Charles – Could not locate info!
He may be able to help! Charles Aliff –…

Brunner, Robert – Could not locate info!

Cagle, Melvin –…/The-Veteran-Spring-Why-a…


Harold Hamilton –…/chronic-pains-emotional-toll…

Hartgrove, Daniel –…/name/daniel-hartsgrove-obituary…

Ingram III, Charles –…/article_b7a4a712…

Jarvis, Michael…/ct-indiana-doctor……/indiana-man-kills-doctor…

Kevin Keller, 52 – US Navy – July 30, 2014 – Wytheville, VA…/article_65866e4c-18f6-11e4…

Kershaw, Sarah –…/sarah-kershaw-former-times…

Kimberly, Allison…/Allison…/obituary.html…

Lane, Keith – Timothy Shields
August 8, 2017 · Colon, MI I would like you too include Kieth Lane . US Army , Vietnam in country , combat wounded . He died recovering from ulcers surgery of a stroke and heart attack in Battle Creek VA medical center in Michigan .…/sturgisjournal/obituary.aspx…

Lichtenberg, Steven –…/chronic-pains-emotional-toll…

Markel, Robert –…/08/heroin_overdose_deaths.html

Miles, Richard – Could not locate info!

Murphy, Thomas –…/The-Veteran-Spring-Why-a…

Paddock, Karon

Denny Peck, 58 – Civilian – September 17,2016 – Seattle, Wa……/the-whitecoats-dont…/…

Peterson, Michael –…

Reid, Marsha –…/daughter-blames…

Simpson, Jessica –

Daniel Somers, 30 – US Army – June 10, 2013 – Denied Pain Meds/Suicide…

Son, Randall –…/woman-says-marion-va…/…

Bryan Spece, 54 – USMC – May 3, 2017 – Great Falls, Montana – Denied Meds/Suicide…/patient-suicide…

Tombs, John –…/The-Veteran-Spring-Why-a…

 Jennifer E. Adams age 41 of Helena  December 20, 1976April 25, 2018

Jay Lawrence  March 1, 2017  on the same bench in the Hendersonville, Tennessee, park where the Lawrences had recently renewed their wedding vows, the 58-year-old man gripped his wife’s hand and killed himself with a gun.

suicide due to pain video

Eden Prairie Aug 2018 handwritten note, which stated she “could not endure any more pain and needed to escape it.”

Raymond Arlugo  August 29th 2018

Kris Hardenbrook   Oct 2018   What is the difference between patient abandonment and a FIRING SQUAD ? – NOT MUCH ?

Robert Charles Foster,65 Nov 3, 2018 Chronic pain pt …SUICIDE BY COP

Lee Cole 04/23/2018

Peter A. Kaisen  76-year-old veteran committed suicide (Aug. 24, 2016) in the parking lot of the Northport Veterans Affairs Medical Center on Long Island, 

Paul Fitzpatrick, 56 Oct 2018, kills himself blaming 20 years of debilitating pain caused by laser eye surgery

Jessica Starr   Dec, 2018 failed Lasik SMILE eye surgery resulting in chronic pain

Paolo Antonio Argenzio:  Passed away on Monday December 10th 2018, from a self inflicted gunshot wound

Rory G. Hosking, age 50, honorable Army Veteran, passed away Feb. 9, 2019 from his struggle with chronic pain

Sonya White has passed away on Thursday March 7, 2019 at 30 years old

Danielle Byron Henry 10th June, 2017

Kelly Catlin, the 23-year-old Olympic cyclist with debilitating migraines committed suicide 16th March, 2019

Dawn Anderson was 53 years old, and a former Registered Nurse died on March 11, 2019 in untreated agonizing pain

Adam Palmer Jan 20,2019    Family says Pleasant Grove man committed suicide after going off pain meds too quickly

Bobbi Fencl April 9, 2019 My wife Bobbi Fencl is one of the recent casualties of the insane Federal, State and Physician response to the Opioid Crisis. She committed suicide this last Tuesday. She is now out of pain and wrapped in His arms.

Post on FB 07/18/2019 – exact suicide date unknown: 

Remember The Fallen Pain Warriors.
Travis Patterson, a Texan, a decorated Staff Sergeant in the Army, combat veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan, was injured by a road side mine, and discharged from the army in 2016. He was in daily severe pain. He could not get pain treatment, and tried to commit suicide and was admitted to a Topeka Kansas VA hospital by his 26 year old wife. The VA refused to treat his war wounds with pain medicine and offered instead a stress ball. Two days later he made sure of his own method for treating his intractable pain by killing himself. He had a future with his wife and studying law but it did not matter. He showed no signs of mental illness, just the stress of failure to treat his underlying war injuries with long term daily pain. One other veteran remarked the US Government was finding other ways to “kill us”.

Additional information: Travis was denied pain medication for this combat wounds by the VA by law passed without knowledge of most 12–15, deep in a 2000 page budget bill. It is now federal law to forcibly taper wounded veterans with intractable pain to “prevent addiction and heroin overdoses” Traviswas a Texas native).

  Akaiah Nicole Altstock, 14, of Sneads Ferry, North Carolina, died Wednesday, September 25, 2019.

Suicides from under/untreated pain – KNOWS NO AGE LIMITS

David Pezzula: this time the pain was too difficult, and he died by suicide on Friday morning, December 6, 2019

02/14/2020  Last night we suffered a major loss. Our beautiful Jessica hung herself. She was only 24 and left behind 2 beautiful little boys, Kyson age 4 and Kaison age 2. People think pain doesn’t kill but I assure you, it absolutely does. Rest in Peace Jess

Jennifer Hill  CRPS SUICIDE  April 1, 2020  HER 53rd  BIRTHDAY

Asked to share

Chinese whistleblower virologist comes forward on COVID-19

The OVERLORDS at FACEBOOK and YOUTUBE keep taking this down…

Medical/health information surrounding Covid 19

FDA is not in a position to “regulate the practice of medicine

While Stephen Hahn says the FDA is not in a position to “regulate the practice of medicine,” a group of researchers oppose doctors prescribing the anti-malarial drug for COVID.

The Hill: FDA Chief: Hydroxychloroquine Use A Decision Between Doctor And Patient 
Stephen Hahn, the commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), on Thursday declined to take a definitive stance on whether people should take hydroxychloroquine as a treatment for the coronavirus,

instead saying that decision should be made between a doctor and a patient.

“We had data that when this drug was combined with others, there was some risk associated with that. But the question you’re asking me is a decision between a doctor and a patient,” Hahn said on NBC’s “Today” show. (Axelrod, 7/30)

CNN: Hydroxychloroquine: Researchers Publish Scathing Critique Of Henry Ford Study Touted By The White House 
Researchers on Wednesday published scathing critiques of a study President Trump repeatedly touted on Twitter. That study, published earlier this month in the International Journal of Infectious Diseases, claimed to show that hydroxychloroquine saved lives. President Trump tweeted about it enthusiastically. (Cohen, 7/31)

Kaiser Health News and Politifact HealthCheck: Don’t Fall For This Video: Hydroxychloroquine Is Not A COVID-19 Cure 
Millions of people, including the president of the United States, have seen or shared a video in which a doctor falsely claims there is a cure for the coronavirus, and it’s a medley starring hydroxychloroquine. The video shows several doctors in white coats giving a press conference outside the Supreme Court in Washington, D.C. It persists on social media despite bans from Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, and it was published by Breitbart, a conservative news site. (Funke, 7/31)

Also —

The Hill: Ohio Pharmacy Board Backtracks, Withdraws Rule Barring Use Of Hydroxychloroquine To Treat Coronavirus
The State of Ohio Board of Pharmacy on Thursday withdrew a rule that would have barred pharmacists, licensed distributors of drugs and medical institutions from prescribing the controversial anti-malaria drug hydroxychloroquine to treat or prevent the novel coronavirus after Gov. Mike DeWine (R) voiced concerns. The state pharmacy board said in a memo on Wednesday that the rule would, in general, prohibit the use of hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine for the treatment or prevention of COVID-19… But the rule quickly met with pushback from DeWine (R), who urged the state board to reconsider the decision the day it went into effect. (Wise, 7/30)

If the FDA does not have the authority to regulate the practice of medicine… DOES THE DEA LACK THAT SAME AUTHORITY ?


those hearing aids needs to have their batteries replaced regularly

In the rear view mirror: hindsight is 20/20

My blog – this blog – is now in its NINTH YEAR and trying to put things into perspective that is a similar time frame that I spent going thru HIGH SCHOOL and COLLEGE. Going from grade school to becoming a licensed Pharmacist  would suggest is a substantial amount of progress and advancement.

During a similar time frame I opened or expanded several successful businesses.

Generally, the best way for an individual or entity/group to reach/accomplish a goal is to have a dedicated organized plan  along with a adequate number of knowledgeable people who will work toward the goal on a consistent basis, or some will just either pray and figure that someone else will make it happen or just rely on “dumb luck”.

Since 2012 … there has been 5 different Congressional sessions and two different Presidents one from each party. The Republicans have had the majority in both the Senate and the House the majority of the time and only ONE SESSION where both the Senate and the House had the majority of both houses and was the same party as our President – first two years of Trump’s presidency.

In looking at what has happened in/around the chronic pain community during the same time frame.  Advocates have come and gone, the National Pain Report is now gone, one of the national non-profit advocate had some “issues” and the then president was booted out.

How many more FB pages devoted to something going on in/around pain have been created… but it would seem that the numbers have exploded.  I don’t think that any one could come up with a accurate number.  Has to be in the THOUSANDS.

The vast majority of those FB pages are “closed”, “private” or some other visibility restriction placed on them..   Meaning that NOTHING could go viral from a post in one of those FB pages.  Could that be part of the reason that seemingly the vast majority of the community have no idea what is going on in/around the community?

Most everyone recognizes that there is a substantial amount of infighting and disagreement.  This is not something that has happened overnight and it seems to only be getting worse.

There is claimed that there are 100 million chronic pain pts and some 25-35 million within that number are considered dealing with intractable chronic pain – needing some pain mitigating therapy 24/7.  Some want to readily blame President Trump for the current problems.  Yet what political party was in the majority when the decade of pain law expired in 2009 and there was no interest in renewing it ?  What political party was in the majority when the DEA cut opiate pharma production limits by about 50% over several years ?  What political party was in the majority when the CDC published their Opiate dosing guidelines in 2016 ? Has the presumed Democratic Presidential candidate came out and made a statement for or against chronic pain pts getting adequate therapy and/or the DEA continuing to raid prescribers’ offices and shutting them down over mostly fabricated or exaggerated facts ?

Imagine if early in 2019 had come together and got 1% of the community to donate $10/month to a non profit that would be hiring a law firm, PR firm, Lobbyist firm.  That would generate 10 million/month cash flow to a  “war chest”.  At this point in time those professional could be approaching the upper echelon of those two political campaigns with the facts that they represent 100 million chronic painers and that they are looking for a candidate who will support getting the DEA out of prescribers’ offices…

If Trump wanted those 100 million votes the community needs an executive order to put a muzzle on the DEA BEFORE NOV 3rd or those 100 million votes will be given to Biden.  Generally it only takes about 65 million total votes to win the presidency.  In reality, the community could determine who gets elected to just about any office at any level from city/county/state/nationally. Remember, abt 85% of Congress is up for re-election every two years and abt 98% will get re-elected regardless what they do or don’t do or promise to get done and never does or does just the opposite of what they promised.

But because of the on going infighting and disunity within the community … that boat has already sailed for this election year.

Do I believe that anything will change within the community ?  Not really, IMO, all too many are willing to compromise and unify as long as others are willing to compromise to their opinion(s) and unify under their “organizational umbrella “

Let’s hope that as the stronger advocates “thrown in the towel” and just walk away – out of frustration – the last advocate standing has the entire community’s best interest in mind

Pennsylvania uses ‘weighted lottery’ to distribute lifesaving remdesivir in favor of low-income patients

Pennsylvania uses ‘weighted lottery’ to distribute lifesaving remdesivir in favor of low-income patients

South Carolina doctor says they will also use a similar system if faced with shortages

The antiviral drug remdisivir has been effective in treating COVID-19, reducing risk of death for severely ill patients by 62 percent. It is also scarce, leaving a number of states in fear of running out as coronavirus cases continue to rise across the country.

As a solution to this problem, Pennsylvania is encouraging healthcare providers to use a “weighted lottery” system to decide which patients are treated with this lifesaving drug and who goes without. Instead of medical need being the deciding factor of who receives a drug, this lottery is weighted in favor of those who sit lower on the socioeconomic spectrum.

Betsy McCaughey, former lieutenant governor of New York and chairman of the Committee to Reduce Infection Deaths, is concerned that this move is not being given proper attention and could have huge implications for the health care system moving forward.

“They’ve decided to do some social engineering and tilt the scales and make sure that the drug goes to people who live in low-income areas in preference to patients, maybe in the same ICU with the same medical problems, who live in a nicer neighborhood,” McCaughey told Fox News.

McCaughey says this sort of “redistributive medicine” could have serious ramifications if adopted by more states and in more areas of health care. Hospitals face drug shortages all the time, like the widely used vincristine for childhood cancer. McCaughey worries that if this sort of tipping of the scales becomes normal practice it is the middle class who will suffer.

“I don’t think we should be rationing scarce medical resources against the middle class. We’ve got to treat everybody the same. They’re starting with remdesivir but this is only the beginning,” she said.

The rationale behind this new system is to “redress inequities that make health and safety less accessible to disadvantaged groups,” says the Pennsylvania Department of Health. “One strategy to accomplish this is to use a metric like the Area Deprivation Index to identify patients from disadvantaged communities, then give them somewhat increased chances to receive treatment in a weighted lottery,” according to their website.

Pennsylvania is not alone in this social justice push to ration drugs away from the middle class.

According to Dr. Dee Ford, who was on a panel of ethicists and medical experts who developed an “ethically principled” process to distribute the initial supply of remdesivir in South Carolina, the state would also adopt a similar system if faced with shortages.

While the general public is in favor of medical treatment being given to those most in need and using a blind lottery system, McCaughey believes academics are using the pandemic as an opportunity to push a “redistributionist agenda.”

“It’s time for the public to discuss this and speak out for fairness in medicine. It’s such a serious issue that it should be discussed by everybody, not just behind the closed doors of an academic discussion,” said McCaughey.

The Pennsylvania Department of Health responded to Fox New’s request for comment by saying they have distributed six shipments of remdesivir to acute health care facilities and have “devised a formula to ensure equitable allocation [of remdesivir] to all acute care health care facilities.” In their statement they also say a ‘”weighted lottery” is an inaccurate name for this formula, however, the term is used on their website.

“Additionally, the Department of Human Services, Department of Health and PA Emergency Management Agency, along with a number of other stakeholder groups, developed a system of set recommendations for how the hospitals can allocate RDV. These recommendations are available for use by all hospitals, and promote equal access to this treatment based on clinical judgment. While utilization of these guidelines is completely optional and up to the facility and the individual health care provider, we emphasize the need to make treatment accessible to all who can best benefit from its use,” the statement continued.

Rapp Report: The Prosecution of Doctors and Propaganda Campaign

The Prosecution of Doctors and Propaganda Campaign

In this episode we discuss the witch hunt against pain doctors in the United States, particularly that of Dr. Steven Henson of Wichita, Kansas, who is now serving a life sentence. We also discuss the propaganda campaign being used against doctors and pain patients that fuels this opioid hysteria.


Rite Aid deployed facial recognition systems in hundreds of U.S. stores

Rite Aid deployed facial recognition systems in hundreds of U.S. stores

In the hearts of New York and metro Los Angeles, Rite Aid installed facial recognition technology in largely lower-income, non-white neighborhoods, Reuters found. Among the technology the U.S. retailer used: a state-of-the-art system from a company with links to China and its authoritarian government.


Over about eight years, the American drugstore chain Rite Aid Corp quietly added facial recognition systems to 200 stores across the United States, in one of the largest rollouts of such technology among retailers in the country, a Reuters investigation found.

In the hearts of New York and metro Los Angeles, Rite Aid deployed the technology in largely lower-income, non-white neighborhoods, according to a Reuters analysis. And for more than a year, the retailer used state-of-the-art facial recognition technology from a company with links to China and its authoritarian government.

In telephone and email exchanges with Reuters since February, Rite Aid confirmed the existence and breadth of its facial recognition program. The retailer defended the technology’s use, saying it had nothing to do with race and was intended to deter theft and protect staff and customers from violence. Reuters found no evidence that Rite Aid’s data was sent to China.

Last week, however, after Reuters sent its findings to the retailer, Rite Aid said it had quit using its facial recognition software. It later said all the cameras had been turned off.

“This decision was in part based on a larger industry conversation,” the company told Reuters in a statement, adding that “other large technology companies seem to be scaling back or rethinking their efforts around facial recognition given increasing uncertainty around the technology’s utility.”

Reuters pieced together how the company’s initiative evolved, how the software has been used and how a recent vendor was linked to China, drawing on thousands of pages of internal documents from Rite Aid and its suppliers, as well as direct observations during store visits by Reuters journalists and interviews with more than 40 people familiar with the systems’ deployment. Most current and former employees spoke on condition of anonymity, saying they feared jeopardizing their careers.

While Rite Aid declined to disclose which locations used the technology, Reuters found facial recognition cameras at 33 of the 75 Rite Aid shops in Manhattan and the central Los Angeles metropolitan area during one or more visits from October through July.

The cameras were easily recognizable, hanging from the ceiling on poles near store entrances and in cosmetics aisles. Most were about half a foot long, rectangular and labeled either by their model, “iHD23,” or by a serial number including the vendor’s initials, “DC.” In a few stores, security personnel – known as loss prevention or asset protection agents – showed Reuters how they worked.

The cameras matched facial images of customers entering a store to those of people Rite Aid previously observed engaging in potential criminal activity, causing an alert to be sent to security agents’ smartphones. Agents then reviewed the match for accuracy and could tell the customer to leave.

Rite Aid told Reuters in a February statement that customers had been apprised of the technology through “signage” at the shops, as well as in a written policy posted this year on its website. Reporters found no notice of the surveillance in more than a third of the stores it visited with the facial recognition cameras.

Among the 75 stores Reuters visited, those in areas that were poorer or less white were much more likely to have the equipment, the news agency’s statistical analysis found.

Stores in more impoverished areas were nearly three times as likely as those in richer areas to have facial recognition cameras. Seventeen of 25 stores in poorer areas had the systems. In wealthier areas, it was 10 of 40. (Ten of the stores were in areas whose wealth status was not clear. Six of those stores had the equipment.)

In areas where people of color, including Black or Latino residents, made up the largest racial or ethnic group, Reuters found that stores were more than three times as likely to have the technology.

The Reuters findings illustrate “the dire need for a national conversation about privacy, consumer education, transparency, and the need to safeguard the Constitutional rights of Americans,” said Carolyn Maloney, the Democratic chairwoman of the House oversight committee, which has held hearings on the use of facial recognition technology.

Rite Aid said the rollout was “data-driven,” based on stores’ theft histories, local and national crime data and site infrastructure.

Cathy Langley, Rite Aid’s vice president of asset protection, said earlier this year that facial recognition – which she referred to as “feature matching” – resulted in less violence and organized crime in the company’s stores. Last week, however, Rite Aid said its new leadership team was reviewing practices across the company, and “this was one of a number of programs that was terminated.”

‘Orwellian surveillance’

Facial recognition technology has become highly controversial in the United States as its use has expanded in both the public and private sectors, including by law enforcement and retailers. Civil liberties advocates warn it can lead to harassment of innocent individuals, arbitrary and discriminatory arrests, infringements of privacy rights and chilled personal expression.

Adding to these concerns, recent research by a U.S. government institute showed that algorithms that underpin the technology erred more often when subjects had darker skin tones.

Facial recognition systems are largely unregulated in the United States, despite disclosure or consent requirements, or limits on government use, in several states, including California, Washington, Texas and Illinois. Some cities, including San Francisco, ban municipal officials from using them. In general, the technology makes photos and videos more readily searchable, allowing retailers almost instantaneous facial comparisons within and across stores.

Among the systems used by Rite Aid was one from DeepCam LLC, which worked with a firm in China whose largest outside investor is a Chinese government fund. Some security experts said any program with connections to China was troubling because it could open the door to aggressive surveillance in the United States more typical of an autocratic state.

U.S. Senator Marco Rubio, a Florida Republican and acting chair of the U.S. Senate’s intelligence committee, told Reuters in a statement that the Rite Aid system’s potential link to China was “outrageous.” “The Chinese Communist Party’s buildup of its Orwellian surveillance state is alarming, and China’s efforts to export its surveillance state to collect data in America would be an unacceptable, serious threat,” he said.

The security specialists expressed concern that information gathered by a China-linked company could ultimately land in that government’s hands, helping Beijing refine its facial recognition technology globally and monitor people in ways that violate American standards of privacy.

“If it goes back to China, there are no rules,” said James Lewis, the Technology Policy Program director at the Washington-based Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Asked for comment, China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said: “These are unfounded smears and rumors.”

‘A promising new tool’

Rite Aid, afflicted with financial losses in recent years, is not the only retailer to adopt or explore facial recognition technology.

Two years ago, the Loss Prevention Research Council, a coalition founded by retailers to test anti-crime techniques, called facial recognition “a promising new tool” worthy of evaluation.

“There are a handful of retailers that have made the decision, ‘Look, we need to leverage tech to sell more and lose less,” said council director Read Hayes. Rite Aid’s program was one of the largest, if not the largest, in retail, Hayes said. The Camp Hill, Pennsylvania-based company operates about 2,400 stores around the country.

The Home Depot Inc said it had been testing facial recognition to reduce shoplifting in at least one of its stores but stopped the trial this year. A smaller rival, Menards, piloted systems in at least 10 locations as of early 2019, a person familiar with that effort said.

Walmart Inc has also tried out facial recognition in a handful of stores, said two sources with knowledge of the tests. Walmart and Menards had no comment.

Using facial recognition to approach people who previously have committed “dishonest acts” in a store before they do so again is less dangerous for staff, said Rite Aid’s former vice president of asset protection, Bob Oberosler, who made the decision to deploy an early facial recognition system at Rite Aid. That way, “there was significantly less need for law enforcement involvement,” he said.

‘Tougher’ neighborhoods

In interviews, 10 current and former Rite Aid loss prevention agents told Reuters that the system they initially used in stores was from a company called FaceFirst, which has been backed by U.S. investment firms.

It regularly misidentified people, all 10 of them said.

“It doesn’t pick up Black people well,” one loss prevention staffer said last year while using FaceFirst at a Rite Aid in an African-American neighborhood of Detroit. “If your eyes are the same way, or if you’re wearing your headband like another person is wearing a headband, you’re going to get a hit.”

FaceFirst’s chief executive, Peter Trepp, said facial recognition generally works well irrespective of skin tone, an issue he said the industry addressed years ago. He declined to talk about Rite Aid, saying he would not discuss any possible clients.

Rite Aid originally piloted FaceFirst at its store on West 3rd Street and South Vermont Avenue in Los Angeles, a largely Asian and Latino neighborhood, around 2012.


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